Lazada to establish intellectual property protection framework for South Korea

Southeast Asian e-commerce player inks agreement with Korean Intellectual Property Protection Agency to establish a framework that aims to protect Korean brands and stem the trading of illegal goods on its platform.

Lazada has unveiled plans to establish a framework that aims to protect the intellectual property (IP) rights of South Korean brands as well as stem the trading of illegal goods on its online marketplace.

The Southeast Asian e-commerce player inked a Memorandum of Understanding with Korea IP Protection Agency (KOIPA), which it said was the first of such partnership between the country's industry regulator and a regional e-commerce platform.

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The alliance would allow the two organisations to work on a process that facilitated the reporting and removal of product listings--in countries where Lazada operated--that breached IP rights of Korean brands, they said in a joint statement Tuesday.

Other efforts would include tapping its links with stakeholders such as IP rights owners, trade associations, governments, to establish best practices that aimed to safeguard IP rights, as well as running seminars to raise awareness of IP rights protection.

Lazada's general counsel and head of government affairs, Gladys Chun, said: "Such measures to curb illicit trading of goods on Lazada are aimed at boosting the confidence and preserving the trust of shoppers on our platform.

"It is incumbent on us to create that trusted space for shoppers and brands, giving them the peace-of-mind that we will always be acting in their best interests," Chun added.

The e-commerce site is available in six Asean markets--Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, and the Philippines--serves 560 million consumers across the region. Its site features 400,000 sellers, 3,000 brands, and more than 300 million SKUs (stock keeping units).

Lazada's parent company is Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, which purchased a controlling 51 percent stake in Lazada for US$1 billion in April 2016.

The Southeast Asian platform recently introduced a curated product section, LazMall, that featured more than 1,000 brands and authorised brand distributors, such as Dyson, L'Oreal, P&G, and Samsung. LazMall boasts of providing "100 percent authentic" branded goods and, if found otherwise, would return customers twice the amount they paid for the product.

Citing local broadcaster Arirang News, Lazada said exports from Korea to Asean markets climbed almost 30 percent in the past year.