RealTime IT News

PacNet Steps Up Regional Branding With Hong Kong ISP

Pacific Internet Ltd. of Singapore is stepping up its regional branding strategy with the relaunch of Hong Kong SuperNet as Pacific SuperNet, and plans to gobble up a big piece of the consumer market in Hong Kong.

Pacific Internet has been managing Hong Kong SuperNet (now Pacific SuperNet) since 1996 when the Singapore ISP bought 50.1 percent of the Hong Kong company.

Re-launched Monday, the new Pacific SuperNet plans to carve a niche in the consumer market hoping to equal or better the success that it has achieved in the corporate market of which it has more than 32,000 dial-up customers each paying an average of US$15 a month.

In the pipeline are aggressive, multi-channel, lifestyle marketing, and branding plans targeted at the mass consumer market in Hong Kong.

Pacific SuperNet will customize the marketing plans, modeling after the successful marketing efforts in Singapore and the Philippines, to suit the Hong Kong market.

There is currently one Pacific SuperNet retail shop in Mong Kok, Hong Kong. Plans are underway to set up more.

Subscribers of the re-branded Pacific SuperNet will maintain their hk.super.net domains but new subscribers will be brought under the pacific.net.hk domain.

"The network is getting less Singapore-centric," says Nicholas Lee, Pacific Internet Ltd.'s chief executive officer, of Pacific Internet's effort to step up its regional branding strategy. "On the whole, we [the Pacific Internet Group] will form a larger ISP [Internet Service Provider] to compete with those in the U.S."

Currently, Pacific Internet has a presence in Singapore, Philippines, and Hong Kong. Later this year, it will launch an Australia and India office.

Singapore is the biggest contributor to the group's revenue now, Lee said. The expansion to Hong Kong is an effort to increase our revenue since the population in Hong Kong is twice of that in Singapore.

With the addition of the Australia and India offices later this year, the bulk of the revenue will come from outside of Singapore by mid 2000, Lee said.

The newly launched Pacific SuperNet will work with Pacific Internet (PI) in Singapore and the Philippines to develop e-commerce applications and shopping malls using the existing PI E-hub infrastructure, logistics, and services solutions already put in place as part of the PI network.

Pacific SuperNet has also recently re-engineered its entire network and relocated its computer room to co-locate with Hongkong Telecom. Its backbone has been upgraded to the same switched architecture used in Singapore, achieving over 1Gbps of bandwidth and linking to three international gateways for enhanced reliability.

The Pacific SuperNet network will be monitored both in Hong Kong and Singapore, Lee said.

Pacific SuperNet currently offers a total of 16 megabits per second of bandwidth to be used regionally. It is looking into the installation of a 45 megabits-per-second link from the United States via an existing satellite transponder in the PI regional network.