CNY bazaar goes high-tech with online platform booths
A traditional street bazaar is going high-tech.
Shoppers at this year's Chinese New Year market in Chinatown will find two unusual booths nestled among the ones selling pomelos, decorations, flowers and snacks.
They are by two local online platforms: Shopee, which allows users to buy products using its mobile app and have them delivered; and Native, where users book tours and buy tickets to attractions around the world, including Singapore, through its app and website.
This is the first time they are taking part in the bazaar, and their partnership with the event is in line with Singapore's move towards a Smart Nation.
Mr Philemon Loh, head of publicity and marketing in this year's event organising committee, said the partnership with Shopee and Native is "to better attract visitors across the board", including young people, the elderly, local and foreign visitors.
The event's official opening ceremony and street light-up took place yesterday, and Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing was the guest of honour.
Also at the event were Dr Lily Neo, MP for Jalan Besar GRC, and Mr Vincent Tan, chairman of the event's organising committee.
Dr Neo said: "We hope this year's line-up of events will attract an even larger crowd to Chinatown and help promote the spirit of happiness and harmony in our rich tradition."
At the Shopee booth along Smith Street, visitors can learn first-hand how to shop on the app. CNY goodies will also be available for purchase on the app.
Native's booth at Kreta Ayer Square will allow tourists to get instant information about local tour options and book day tours to places such as Little India and around Chinatown.
Mr Zhou Junjie, Shopee's chief commercial officer, said: "CNY shopping is traditionally an offline experience. By injecting a fresh digital element into the traditionally cash-and-carry environment of a street bazaar, we hope to introduce technology to digitalise and elevate the classic bazaar experience."
Mr Bryan Goh, 28, co-founder of Native, said its app has already seen hundreds of downloads.
"We're getting huge exposure. I believe that in the coming days, there will be an uptake in bookings through our app," he said.
The bazaar will be on until Feb 4, while the street light-up will last until March 6.