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Southeast Asian Consumers: Respect Global, Love Local

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As consumption patterns continue to evolve in Southeast Asia, certain trends are starting to emerge. Older generations continue to highly evaluate trust and simplicity, and this is a divergence from the youth that are more likely to prefer convenience and things associated with lifestyle. Countries with an aging population such as Thailand and Singapore will be targeted as both a traditional market, that is something not open to sudden change, but also markets that higher margin products can be sold to the affluent class. IKEA is a case in point. Whereas Thailand and Singapore have historically relied more on domestic home furnishing brands, the Scandinavian retailer is both boosting its presence and sales within these markets.

Among the younger generation in Southeast Asian markets experience and lifestyle continue to be themes. Surely the global pandemic has contained movement and freedom but youth are still finding ways to spend outside of convention.  They can be seen as embracing a healthier lifestyle across the region as well. This means more spending on products that promote health such as: high quality food, water, branded goods, supplements, among others. Exercise is continuing to see a strong trend, albeit in a muted fashion considering restrictions. Sports and equipment with anything that can be used outside not only contribute to a stronger body, but are also seen more as a life brand to be communicated to others. Better sleep is something that was mostly neglected by all in SEA in terms of health. This is also changing as a burgeoning middle class takes up everything from supplements to furniture that is centered around comfort.

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