The retail distributor boosts its ecommerce presence by accelerating updates to product information with Oracle APEX and Autonomous Database.
“The barrier to entry for OCI with Oracle APEX and Autonomous Database is very small, and its cost-effectiveness allowed us to immediately use the platform and evaluate its efficacy in a hands-on manner. We thus avoided a long, drawn-out evaluation process and quickly adopted a platform that delivered on our needs.”
Founded in 1985 as a trading company, Primer has been in the retail business for over 30 years, managing the distribution of premium products for nearly 200 brands.
The pandemic accelerated digital innovation and spurred growth in marketplaces such as Lazada, Shopee, and Zalora, as well as on Primer’s own webstores, where ecommerce channels almost doubled from 2019 to 2022. The significant increase provided a huge boost in sales and was made possible by its subsidiary, ecommerce service company Aeroworx Asia.
However, the process to update and relist product information on the various ecommerce channels was tedious and took several days. Because each marketplace has its own specific template, Primer’s existing Excel-centric process was increasingly inefficient, resulting in errors and wasted time.
Company leaders recognized that automating the product information process would speed up the product update cycle, improve productivity, and enhance information accuracy. It would also allow information to be accessed faster and easier. To change the status quo, Primer sought a low-code development platform that would reduce the lead time in delivering custom solutions.
OCI’s easy-to-use features, affordable pricing, and ability to meet Primer’s development requirements moved the needle in Oracle’s favor.
Why Primer chose Oracle
After considering other platforms, Primer selected Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) with Oracle Autonomous Database and Oracle APEX for the combination of low startup costs and robust cloud capabilities.
The company could evaluate Oracle APEX’s low-code development features throughout a project’s development lifecycle, measuring metrics such as cost, support, maintenance, flexibility, and turnaround time in a hands-on manner.
In addition, Oracle APEX is native to Oracle Autonomous Database, eliminating complex administration such as patching and encryption. This meant that Primer could improve performance, data availability, and security despite having a small IT team. And since Oracle manages the upkeep and maintenance of the database, the Primer IT team could shift focus toward other tasks that contribute to the company’s growth.
A tedious process to submit product information on various marketplaces and ecommerce platforms that used to take a few days can now be completed in just a few hours.
By moving application development to OCI with APEX and Autonomous Database for transaction processing (ATP), Primer was able to build a master product catalog from scratch 2X to 3X faster than its previous approach and within budget.
The new low-code system allowed staff to update product information easily and reuse the same information rather than prepare it every time. It also improved the quality of the information, enabling faster and error-free uploading regardless of the marketplace or webstore. By decreasing human involvement, points of failure have significantly decreased, further improving efficiency.
About the customer
Primer is a diversified retail company that is not only involved in distribution of hundreds of brands but is also active in other domains such as air conditioners, sanitation equipment, hospitality, ecommerce, warehousing, logistics, and more.
Aeroworx Asia, a subsidiary of Primer, provides end-to-end ecommerce solutions for lifestyle brands across Southeast Asia. Its suite of services includes performance marketing, graphic design, store management, customer service, and warehousing.
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