Farica Edgina Yosafat has always believed in following her dreams. After earning a master’s degree in science, she became a physics lecturer at a university before turning to eCommerce entrepreneurship in 2017. Her store on Lazada, Berry Baby, sells more than 800 mother and baby products and provides work opportunities and eCommerce training to women from her home community in Bandung, Indonesia. To Farica, eCommerce is not just a way to earn an income but a means to empower women to showcase their skills and creativity and also reach a sense of personal fulfilment.
“Many people underestimate women. However, women are strong and adaptable,” Farica said. “Believe in yourself and focus on what you want to achieve.”
Recognized for her contributions to the digital economy, Farica was one of six recipients of the Lazada Forward Woman of the Year Award. The prestigious accolade was newly added to the second edition of the Lazada Forward Women Awards (LFWA), which like last year was held on International Women’s Day on March 8. The winners of this new accolade were selected from each of the six markets that Lazada operates in and were chosen for their resilience, ingenuity, business acumen and leadership qualities.
The other Lazada Forward Woman of the Year Award winners included Kong Wai Theng from Malaysia, who trained herself through Lazada University and acquired the skills to bring her brick-and-mortar pharmacy online to resounding success; Monalisa Gao, a pioneering eCommerce entrepreneur known for being among the first to sell consumer electronics through Lazada in the Philippines; Singapore’s Liang Wee Ling, a self-taught eCommerce entrepreneur who has found success through active participation in Lazada’s mega campaigns; Pattiya Thanasrivanitchai from Thailand, who started her online store, Happi Cup, on Lazada as a way to destigmatize feminine hygiene and to promote eco-conscious period products; as well as Vietnam’s Đoàn Trần Thùy Linh, who despite having no prior eCommerce experience, was able to leverage Lazada University’s resources to become one of Lazada’s top sellers.
What these women have accomplished is especially impressive considering the multiple roles they juggle. Aside from being successful entrepreneurs, many are also wives, mothers and community leaders who’ve taken it upon themselves to train and empower new sellers on Lazada.
To celebrate the many achievements of women sellers across Southeast Asia, this year’s LFWA also saw the addition of three other award categories on top of the newly added Lazada Forward Woman of the Year Award. These included the Rising Star Award, given to a seller who started their eCommerce journey in the last 12 months; the Bricks to Clicks Tech Adopter Award for entrepreneurs who successfully expanded from offline to online selling; and the Social Star Award, which recognizes a seller who has been able to connect and engage effectively with consumers to create an unforgettable shopping experience. The event also saw the return of the Creative Award, Enterprising Award and Inspiring Award, adding up to a total of seven award categories this year.
All the winners overcame many hurdles and challenges to achieve success in their eCommerce journeys. As they shared their inspiring stories, they also had words of wisdom for aspiring entrepreneurs and online sellers and encouraged them to leverage interactive mediums and tools such as social media or livestreaming, integrate their brand experiences across offline and online channels in the new omnichannel shopping era, and stay ahead of retail trends.
“It is incredible to witness the remarkable achievements of women sellers across Southeast Asia’s digital commerce ecosystem,” said Lazada Group Chief Operating Officer Raymond Yang. “Our Lazada sellers have continued to innovate and adapt their businesses to the eCommerce environment, cater to their customers and enhance product offerings. We are proud to journey alongside these winners and create a world that is diverse and inclusive.”
Catch the event highlights of the Lazada Forward Women Awards 2022 and see the full list of winners here.
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