TikTok to invest 12.2 mln USD to boost digital economy in Southeast Asia

JAKARTA, June 15 (Xinhua) — Social networking platform TikTok will invest 12.2 million U.S. dollars over the next three years to help over 120,000 small businesses in Southeast Asia, to transition their businesses from offline to online, said Chief Executive Officer Shou Zi Chew on Thursday.

The investment comprises cash grants, digital skills training and advertising credits for small businesses, including micro businesses, in rural and suburban areas.

“The role we’ve played in expanding economic opportunities, education and community-building in this region and around the world is immense. We are excited to see the positive impact TikTok has had and are committed to continuing the work of helping individuals, communities, and businesses grow and thrive,” said Chew at the launch of The TikTok Effect: Accelerating Southeast Asia’s Businesses, Education and Community Report in Jakarta.

According to the report, small businesses in this region polled increased their revenue by nearly 50 percent through selling their products and services on TikTok and close to four in five businesses (79 percent) transitioned from offline to online marketing channels using the platform. In addition, more than 80 percent of TikTok creators polled boosted their incomes through avenues such as TikTok LIVE and brand sponsorships.

Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said at the event that Indonesia’s digital economy has grown from 41 billion U.S. dollars in 2019 to 77 billion U.S. dollars in 2022, and TikTok is one of the digital platforms that is widely used, especially by young people.

The newly released TikTok report suggests that this platform has more than 325 million monthly active users across Southeast Asia, and about 15 million businesses use the platform.

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