Athens, Greece – January 25, 2024 – On January 24, Rakuten Viber, the global leader in private and secure messaging and voice-based communication, held its first exclusive business event in Greece in seven years. The event took place at the stunning Lighthouse at Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center in Athens, with a focus on exploring innovative solutions addressing contemporary business challenges. The focal point of the event was Viber for Business, an ecosystem of solutions for all business needs, powered by the well-known Rakuten Viber app.
Led by Rakuten Viber's senior executive team, including CEO Ofir Eyal on his first visit to Greece since taking the role, and Chief Revenue Officer Cristina Constandache, the event drew in top industry experts and leading brands in Greece. Ofir Eyal referred to Greece as a flagship market for many Rakuten Viber updates and emphasized the country's pivotal role in the company's superapp development.
"Greece is one of the biggest stars of Europe, seamlessly blending its heritage and culture with technology and progress. Watching how Greeks preserve their rich history while embracing innovation is truly inspiring," says Ofir Eyal, CEO at Rakuten Viber. "We are honored to be a part of your digital transformation journey, helping local businesses change, grow, and innovate."
This was followed by the honorable commencement delivered by Minister of Digital Governance Dimitris Papastergiou. He emphasized the importance of empowering digital transformation to make Greece even more outward-looking, brighter, and digital. In addition, a separate reference was made to the digital assistant mAIgov, the first Artificial Intelligence application for the Greek public sector. It further facilitates the daily lives of citizens and businesses, simplifying and accelerating their interaction with the state.
Delving into the latest digital trends and future predictions, Rakuten Viber’s Chief Revenue Officer, Cristina Constandache, highlighted the key factors businesses need to be aware of today for future success. Notable trends include direct-to-consumer marketing, two-way brand-user interaction, and a reduced number of MarTech tools used by brands. Cristina noted that brands might soon be seeking a single platform to address their needs, and superapps are expected to continue their emergence in Europe, following significant success in Asia with examples such as WeChat, Line, and Grab.
Rakuten Viber’s Noa Bar Shay, Sr. Director, Partnerships & Sales, and Konstantin Kostadinov, Sr. Sales Director CEE & CIS, presented how brands can use Viber for Business solutions as a superapp ecosystem for their various business needs: building brand awareness, boosting sales, increasing ROI, enhancing customer experience and building loyalty and more.
They noted that the top-5 industries using Viber for Business today in Greece include: retail & ecommerce (43%), finance & insurance (14%), health & wellness (11%), FMCG (10%), IT & telecom (7%), closely followed by hospitality.
Leading industry experts and top brands in Greece shared their insights on digital transformation and trends. Expert insights included a fireside chat and a panel discussion on how brands should navigate the current digital landscape and what they should consider when building digital strategies.
Rakuten Viber’s team offered a glimpse of a few upcoming releases that Greek brands can expect in the future. These include a click-to-message ad that allows brands to convert leads to customers in a few steps, a brand-new solution for one-time passwords, enhanced security for brand-user interactions, and an opportunity for users to make free calls to brands, recently launched worldwide.
"All of these updates are part of our superapp strategy, which involves building an ecosystem of solutions for businesses of all sizes to address their needs," says Cristina Constandache, Chief Revenue Officer at Rakuten Viber. "Our goal is clear – to empower Greek businesses to innovate and to serve as a global superapp that addresses their local needs."
Following the presentations, attendees enjoyed a networking soirée and a special performance by the exceptional Thodoris Marantinis, singer of the band Onirama.