Bandung partners Facebook to help entrepreneurs

Social network building e-commerce platform for local SMEs.

The Bandung City Government is working with Facebook to help the city’s small and medium businesses compete regionally. Facebook is building an e-commerce platform called Bandung Juara Store where local SMEs will be able to sell their products. The store will be launched in mid-February, said Mayor Ridwan Kamil, after meeting with the company’s head of public policy in Southeast Asia. An initial prototype of the store already exists on Facebook with seven products. Shoppers can see the price of each product and send a message to the seller to ask for more details. Facebook will help local entrepreneurs reach buyers in Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines, Mayor Ridwan said. This will make them more competitive in the newly formed ASEAN Economic Community, where businesses will be able to expand across countries more freely. The government will curate the store with products from companies that have been trained in social media marketing. "We will provide training with supervision from Facebook. Those to go on the portal have to get certificates for passing the training," the Mayor said. The Mayor hopes to eventually have 300 businesses selling their products on the Bandung Juara Store. Image about by Bandung Office of Communications and Informatics.