Born to enjoy
As the CEO of a clutch of Asia-focused global publications, I travel a lot on business across several nations in the region. What I have found fascinating is its diversity not only in language and food, but also the festivities.
I often think that Asians are born to enjoy festivals, and they spare no efforts to even invent these occasions. They believe that life is for enjoyment. Perhaps that could be one reason why we Asians are psychologically less depressed even in bad times.
Festivals are the time Asians get rejuvenated mentally and physically. They get high-octane positive energy that steels them to face the problems of tomorrow. The air of festivities generates immeasurable happiness that is overwhelming and infectious. These festivities are occasions for Asians to reciprocate love with gifts.
The increasingly Internet-savvy Asians see it worthy enough to splurge on gifts. This has boosted online businesses in particular to stratospheric heights. It is reported that retail sales in Asia will grow by an average 4.6 per cent on a volume basis to US$7.6 trillion.
Leading the rapid growth are companies such as Internet giants like Alibaba, which has hit a market capitalisation of US$251. India’s top e-commerce firm Flipkart is valued at US$15.5 billion. The boom is getting accelerated because e-commerce offers personalised gift purchase conveniences.
By John S Powath
Full text in PTA October/November issue