Is there any method in Rocket Internet’s madness? A few months ago, I made a point that winter has landed in Southeast Asia with the fast and furious expansion of Rocket Internet from the infamous Samwer brothers. In the process, I also concluded that while they may be bad for innovation but they would demonstrate good examples of execution and speed to the rest of the technology ecosystem within the region. While monitoring their revolving door executives quitting within 3-6 months, employees complaining about their ways and their startups shutting down like Home24 within a short period of time, we are beginning to ask, “Is it really going to work or fall apart?” Read more
If this report by Willis Wee from TechinAsia is true, Zalora is in bad shape, and the feared Oliver Samwer visited Singapore two days ago for a marathon eight-hour “motivational talk”.
These allegations are false, claims Tan Wee, managing director and co-founder of Zalora Singapore, an online fashion retailer owned by the infamous Rocket Internet. He denies the article’s suggestion that “the meeting is probably triggered by complaints Zalora has received from its customers so far.”
In fact, Tan Wee reports that his German boss was in fact quite happy with progress.
“The exact conversation he had with me was: ‘Tan Wee, good job, things are going well,’” he says. The visit was in fact a routine one, and this was the third time they had met in Singapore.
Since Zalora launched in Singapore and Malaysia, it has received a lot of complaints about slow delivery times on its Facebook Pages. Some items were not received even after two weeks.
While he acknowledges that many of the feedback are valid, and that they’re learning, Tan Wee questions if a few Facebook comments are enough to paint an accurate picture of Zalora’s health. Read more