Singaporean multinational banking group United Overseas Bank Limited (UOB) and international e-commerce company Lazada Group have entered a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to collaborate on retail products and banking solutions in Southeast Asia.

UOB said in statement on Monday that the partnership is for their combined customer base in five key Southeast Asian markets, namely Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam.

It said this regional strategic partnership will also see the two industry leaders working together to increase access to financing for e-commerce sellers on the Lazada platform.

According to the statement, this will be Lazada’s first partnership with a bank across a variety of payments and financial services in Southeast Asia, as well as UOB’s first regional collaboration with an e-commerce platform.

The partnership will tap on Lazada’s technology and position as a leading Southeast Asian e-commerce platform and UOB’s expertise in financial products, digital banking services and long-established trust with customers.

This will allow both customers and sellers to enjoy better access and enhanced benefits from payment and financial services that best meet their needs.

“ASEAN plays a strategic role as an economic powerhouse to the world. As a bank with strong presence in ASEAN, our ambition is to open doors to new business opportunities across the region,” said Frederick Chin, Head of Group Wholesale Banking and Markets, UOB.

According to him, working with an e-commerce partner like Lazada complements the firm’s continued effort to bring personalized and innovative solutions to a thriving ASEAN.

Through this partnership, he said consumers and businesses can benefit from seamless financial services that bring about access to rewarding experiences within ASEAN’s dynamic digital landscape.

James Dong, Lazada Group Chief Executive Officer, said Lazada is committed to building an open, accessible ecosystem for Southeast Asia.

“We are pleased to share this vision with UOB. For consumers, we will offer easy-to-use, convenient and secure payment and financing options to enable their lifestyle needs,

“For brands and sellers, we are here to help them scale up their businesses and accelerate growth. We are here for the long haul, to achieve sustainable, long-term growth with all our ecosystem partners,” he said.

According to the statement, UOB and Lazada customers can look forward to a more rewarding experience when shopping on the e-commerce platform and using lifestyle banking services for their purchases.

Singapore customers will be the first to enjoy these benefits. In Singapore, UOB will offer new customers Lazada cashback vouchers worth up to $200 as a welcome gift.

With UOB’s acquisition of Citigroup’s consumer banking businesses in four ASEAN markets, the bank will be continuing the partnership of the Citi-Lazada co-brand credit cards in Thailand, Malaysia and Vietnam.

In these three markets, the cards will be refreshed as new UOB-Lazada co-brand credit cards later this year with enhanced benefits.

UOB and Lazada will look to extend the co-brand credit card partnership to Singapore and Indonesia.

Apart from enjoying attractive Lazada rewards all year round, cardholders will gain access to special Lazada deals during mega sale events.

As Lazada expands its localized payments and financial services products throughout the region, the e-commerce platform and UOB also intend to collaborate on cash management and transaction processing services for Lazada sellers across the region.

The two partners are looking into offering loans to sellers on the Lazada platform through a new digital lending experience.

Leveraging Lazada’s seller insights and UOB’s digital banking capabilities with integrated financial supply chain management solutions, the collaboration will focus on giving sellers access to streamlined onboarding, approval and disbursement processes for loans and financing across their businesses.

Both parties are working toward a pilot launch this year.

UOB and Lazada are also committed to offering their combined customer base a seamless and integrated experience tailored to customers’ shopping behavior on the platform and their individual needs.

This partnership will strengthen both parties’ capabilities to deliver personalized rewards to customers across Southeast Asia, to better engage and delight them in their online shopping experience.

UOB Malaysia partners SJPP to provide $219M in green financing to SMEs