Category: LatestNews

How Various Technologies are Shaping the Hi-Tech Industry?

Throughout the pandemic, Thai companies as others around the world have understood the importance of accelerating digital transformation and rethinking their operations to survive and thrive in the new normal. As 2022 begins, Thai leaders in the technology industry are looking for innovative ways to drive their business results while staying at the forefront of evolving customer requirements.

Technology has been a driver for economic growth for Thailand and it’s likely to grow in future. The Thai Hi-Tech industry is characterized by rapid innovation which has resulted in market disruption and enhanced competitiveness among the players. Hi-Tech firms in Thailand are now starting to generate better margins because of their initial R&D efforts. The tech start up business in Thailand have developed products using cutting-edge technology collaborating with leading research and development firms and industry manufacturers. 

Well-established as well as Thai startups have understood the importance of investing in the future. They aim to nurture brilliant minds in the hope that it would enable them to grow and expand their technological capabilities. The Thai government has recognized this resource and have established organizations like the Thai Board of Investment (BOI) offering tax incentives to will help the Thai startup community and offer investment opportunities in Thailand

For most Thai entrepreneurs, starting a business in Thailand in the tech space requires a big investment. The key source of the rise in the Thai Hi-tech space has been primarily due to Venture Capitalists (VCs), startup incubators, accelerator programs and business consulting services. As they understand the phase the world is entering into, where high-performance computing would be used everywhere and the semiconductor industry would play a crucial role in empowering this high-performance computing, along with several other technological advances. Since the semiconductor industry is very dependent on R&D, its strength is dependent on its ability to remain competitive. And this offers both domestic and foreign entrepreneurs business opportunities in Thailand.

The powerful resources offered by these VCs and foreign investment in Thailand are helping the start-ups in Thailand off the ground and contributing to the technological growth of Thailand.

Thai consumers would see more products, services and solutions, designed for enhanced customer experience and lifestyle upgrades. 

Robotics and Artificial intelligence (AI)

Thailand’s robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities are growing at a rapid pace thanks to its key role in the global supply chain and innovations sparked by the pandemic. Robotics, AI and digital industries are priority sectors in the Thai government’s Thailand 4.0 scheme. This scheme plans to raise Thailand’s competitiveness by focusing on advanced technologies and sustainable growth.

Thailand’s service robot industry has grown by leaps and bounds with an explosion of innovations addressing the needs of caring for the elderly and offering healthcare services in the pandemic era. Thailand’s global competitiveness in supply chains, particularly in the automotive, electronics and food and food processing industries, have furthered the need for robotics and industrial automation as Thai businesses embrace transformative effects on productivity.

Augmented Reality (AR)

Augmented reality (AR) will create immersive workplaces for Thai employees no matter where they work from. Smart Glasses and other AR innovations would create interactive training experiences, enhanced productivity and multi-screen environments.

Other Emerging Technologies

Other emerging technologies like Virtual Reality (VR), spatial audio, natural language processing, world-facing cameras, and smart collaboration tools, would continue to change how employees in Thailand interact with technology. This would transform the concept of a workplace in ways that enable employees to seamlessly integrate and succeed as one.

5G Driving Investment in Thailand

Most of the investments in Thailand relating to 5G technology would continue to rise and would include both infrastructure projects as well as production technology upgrades in the Eastern Economic Corridor.

Thai mobile phone operators and the allied industries are investing in the infrastructure required for the 5G technology in the Eastern Economic Corridor while the investments in a Ban Chang smart city in Rayong is at the stage of completion as well. Meanwhile, infrastructure projects for the Pattaya Smart City are underway.

The Thai digital transformation would help enhance government services, minimize inequality in education, and intensify investment opportunities in Thailand. The digital system would be applied to tourism, transportation, medical industry, as well as town planning.

The Thai government is also supporting factories in the EEC for upgrading manufacturing via 5G technology. Presently, 300 factories situated in the industrial estate of WHA Corp are upgrading their production process through automation employing 5G technology and another 10,000 are projected to upgrade their manufacturing process to an automated system within a span of three to five years.

Electric Vehicles (EVs) Development

The EEC is also focusing on EV manufacturing as EV projects in EEC are scheduled for investments in 2022. The Thai government would support infrastructure for boosting EVs and EV development in the areas of charging stations, motor parts and batteries.

The EV manufacturing in Thailand is likely to happen at a faster rate, and the Thai government aims for domestic production to account for 30 percent of EV manufacturing by 2030. Meanwhile, Chinese carmaker GWM (Great Wall Motor) has chosen Thailand to be the base for its first smart factory in Southeast Asia for boosting international sales.

Another major project to manufacture EVs in Thailand is a joint investment between the state-run energy group PTT Plc and Taiwan’s Foxconn. PTT and Foxconn signed an MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) to make EVs and EV components for the domestic Thai market. this partnership will offer an open platform that provides hardware as well as software services to automakers in Thailand.

Another key project is a joint venture between Rojana Industrial Park Plc and Evlomo Inc in an 8-gigawatt battery energy storage project in Chon Buri. The project is projected to create 3,000 jobs, and tech transfer for electric mobility in Thailand and upgrade Nong Yai to become the EV manufacturing hub for ASEAN. The batteries would be used by four-wheeled vehicles, heavy-duty trucks, buses, and two-wheeled vehicles. The construction is likely to be completed in a span of 18-24 months.

Thailand-Guangdong Cooperation Project

The Thai government in association with the Chinese authorities have launched the Thailand-Guangdong cooperation project for promoting the high-tech industries in Thailand, including electric vehicles (EVs), and the green economy in the EEC (Eastern Economic Corridor) area. This project will also cover digital and 5G wireless technology, smart city development and healthcare will boost investment and take Thai Hi-Tech industries to the next level. The Thai government and Chinese officials will establish a joint working group that would look for potential investment projects in Hi-Tech industries and work on developing technologies and innovations for shared benefits.

One of the Thai government policies aims to link the Thailand 4.0 scheme and BCG (Bio-, Circular and Green) economic model with China’s five-year economic and social development plan. Thailand 4.0 scheme is emphasising a transition to technological advances while BCG ensures economic sustainability through optimal use of resources with minimal impact on the environment.

Thai Government’s Initiatives

The EEC is part of the Thai government’s strategy to move the country towards a high-tech economy. The Thai Government remains confident it would see THB 300 Bn in investments in the EEC as global recovery drives the need for automation, electric vehicle manufacturing and smart cities. The Thai government is confident that private investment will boost the EEC driven by rising global trade and global economic recovery.

The Thai government is offering a range of privileges and incentives for investments in the EEC, including tax holidays for 5 – 10 years based on the investment category, exemption from corporate income tax additional two years, and a 50 per cent corporate tax reduction for 3 years for investment in projects associated with human resource development.

Thailand’s reforms in business regulations eased the set-up processes and encouraged not just high-end entrepreneurs but individuals to open small business in Thailand. Thailand considerably improved its ranking in the World Bank’s ease of doing business by moving to the 21st spot. As a consequence, the market for High-tech companies in Thailand has exploded, both in terms of the number of companies as well as their customer reach. This change has impacted business functions from design marketing and sales strategies to customer service and research and development. The improvement in the Hi-Tech space is attributable to the Thai government’s efforts to streamline the overall business approval process by adopting digital systems and refining rules and regulations to stay at top of the recent developments. 

Thai Market Entry Strategy

Partnering with a business consultant in Thailand is the most effective way to enter the Hi-Tech space and reach potential Thai buyers. Thai business consulting services could facilitate and expedite market entry for entrepreneurs with their cohesive market knowledge, relationships with key government officials and established distribution networks. 

The post How Various Technologies are Shaping the Hi-Tech Industry? appeared first on StartUp in Thailand.

Source: Asian Correspondent

Reimagining Tourism in Thailand After Pandemic

International tourism is the key and chief contributor to the economy of Thailand. The Thai economy was hit hard by the pandemic—but it is finding ways to support its travel industry and prepare for international travel to arrive once there’s a further recovery.

Thailand’s economy is dependent on international tourism, once a thriving sector that has been impacted due to restrictions brought in by the pandemic. But there have been constant efforts by the Thai government to boost domestic travel, as well as measures for supporting the return of international demand after the country started to reopen its doors to vaccinated travelers from 63 nations last year. 

The pre-pandemic levels of tourist arrivals and spending take a year or two, as per the Thai Hotels Association. It’s likely that in the near future large groups of travelers would start heading to Thailand, provided the pandemic outbreaks remains checked and under control. There’s light at the end of the tunnel, but at the same time, it would be a gradual climb back to the pre-pandemic levels.

A Heavy Blow to Thai Tourism Industry

In 2019, Thailand was in the eighth position globally in the number of international tourist arrivals, with China being the chief source. The country recorded 40 million tourists in 2019, with the top spending categories for inbound visitors being accommodation 28%, shopping 24%, and food and beverages 21%. Moreover, the tourism sector in Thailand created around 36 million jobs and several business opportunities in Thailand in the country between 2014 and 2019. 

Unfortunately, the outbreak of pandemic and subsequent restrictions has hard hit the Thai economy, particularly its tourism as international travel plunged in a matter of a year. Passengers on international flights to Thailand declined by 95% in September 2021, as compared to 2020 and much worse when compared with 2019.

This decline in the number of tourists had a huge impact on tourism spending, as international

travelers spent significantly higher than their local counterparts. In 2019, international travelers made up 33% of overall travelers in Thailand and accounted for around 60% of all tourism spending. On average international tourists spent around $1,543 per traveler, compared to $152 by local travelers. This fall in expenditure undeniably created a ripple effect on the country’s food and beverage (F&B) retail industries, which include approx. 1.2 million small and medium-sized enterprises. 

Recovery seems to be on the horizon for Thailand’s economy, particularly its tourism industry. With pandemic’s hide and seek, slow growth, minimal changes to global tourism strategies, and muted world recovery, Thailand’s tourism are likely to recover to pre-crisis levels early by 2023.

Long-term Optimism

Given that the GDP of Thailand depends significantly on the income from foreign tourists, the local tourism market alone won’t be sufficient to bring the country’s revenue from tourism back to pre-pandemic levels; the tourism sector’s recovery would rely on a resurgence in international travel. This recovery would likely reshape the world’s travel industry landscape and bring a strong imperative for the public as well as investment opportunities in Thailand in the private sector for ensuring the industry’s survival.

Over the longer term, the Thai government and the Thai market alike remain optimistic about international travel. Southeast Asia is among the fastest-growing markets in the world and home to a large middle class of around 300 million people with a strong interest in travelling and a thirst for international aspirations. The Thai tourism industry has requested the Thai government to be flexible with the entry restrictions for tourists both domestic and international. The government is also eagerly looking for foreign investment in Thailand to give a lift to its tourism sector.

Efforts to Stimulate Tourism

The Thai government has arranged several efforts to compensate for the loss of income due to the lack of international and domestic tourists. The Thai government’s effort to encourage domestic travel took the form of offering subsidies for flights and hotel stays for travellers. The Thai government also rolled out various measures for stimulating international travel to its beach destinations and attracting high-end tourists from international markets.

Thailand’s revenue from domestic travel reduced from $34.5 Bn to $15.4 Bn in 2020. An increase in local spending won’t alone compensate for the effect of the pandemic on its economy. Thailand has largely been reliant on the international markets, which represented around 60% of its total tourism spending in 2019.

In response, the country launched the “Phuket Sandbox” last year, an effort to draw demand from international tourists. The initiative allowed fully vaccinated tourists exemption from requirements of quarantine, provided they stayed in Phuket for not less than 14 days before travelling to different parts of the country. The model hopes to attract visitors from Asia, America and Europe—all key markets for Thailand. Various other reopening plans followed, such as “Andaman Sandbox” and “Samui Plus” plans. Together, the plans have created a network of reopened tourist spots, which hopes to position the country as an attractive destination for domestic as well as international travellers alike. Tourist Arrivals in from 91,255 in November 2021 to 230,497 in December 2021

Tourist Arrivals in Thailand

An Eye on New Markets

During the per-pandemic era, China was a key contributor to tourism income for Thailand, accounting for around 27% of its tourism receipts in 2019. Given the Chinese government’s prudent approach towards international travel, the return of Chinese visitors to Thailand at pre-pandemic levels might take a while. Thailand, therefore, is reimagining its strategy and trying to capture new sources of travellers from international markets with rapid recovery in the international travel demand.

The situation might change quickly, especially during these volatile times. The Thai government is closely monitoring the revival of the top source markets and would help its industry players in planning their recovery efforts and capturing untapped value.

Recognizing the shifting traveller trends, and the premium traveller’s resilient nature, the government is pushing to attract travellers from countries with rising demand for international travel. The Thai government’s measures include relaxing and revisiting certain regulations like yachting regulations and taxes on luxury goods—for improving and stimulating the premium travel experience.

Taking a step further, the Thai government is about to launch a Long-Term Residence (LTR) scheme for attracting foreigners to Thailand through new LTR visas (valid up to 10 years), ownership relaxations to foreigners for residential property, tax and investment incentives, and more. The program would be targeting four key personalities: 

Thailand’s ambition is to welcome over a million of these target tourists and generate domestic spending over THB 1 Trillion in the coming five years, starting 2022.

Thailand’s government is also developing a keen interest in casinos, as the country continues to bank on tourism as the prime source of its economic growth. This will also provide a shift and offer various business ideas, Thailand would try to model cities like Las Vegas for bolstering its tourism industry.

Thailand is planning to collect a $9 fee from international tourists from April for developing attractions and covering accident insurance. The new fee would be priced in with the airline tickets and is part of the Thai government’s sustainable tourism plans. Thailand expects around 5-6 million international arrivals this year. International tourists are projected to generate $23.97 Bn this year.

The post Reimagining Tourism in Thailand After Pandemic appeared first on StartUp in Thailand.

Source: Asian Correspondent

Prospects of Fintech Companies in Thailand

The pandemic has brought economic turmoil and has impacted all the sectors in Thailand. A steep decline in tourism revenue from  $117.5 Bn in 2019 to  $24.5 Bn in 2020 caused the contraction of the Thai economy by 5% in 2020.

However, the crisis has also introduced new business opportunities in Thailand for FinTech firms. Lockdowns, social distancing, and temporary bank closures have changed customer behaviour, spurring FinTech start up business in Thailand. Thailand’s internet economy is now worth $30 Bn, up 51% from 2020. 

Thailand Fintech Landscape

Thailand has been progressive to embrace new technologies for increasing its competitiveness. The financial institutions in Thailand have been particularly proactive in enhancing their existing framework, implementing robust safeguards for customers, and investing in developing innovative systems. Thai regulators have been real quick in addressing gaps in legal as well as the regulatory framework that has arisen due to changes to domestic as well as global fintech business.

The Thai government’s key growth strategy is to improve and expand Thailand’s capacity for high value-added technologies such as blockchain, big data, artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, machine learning and cloud computing providing investment opportunities in Thailand

Fintech Trends Driven by the Pandemic

In the Southeast Asian region, Thailand is among the biggest advocates of tech-driven growth with countries like Singapore and Indonesia. These trends were the result of the pandemic’s disruptive effects which created a renaissance for FinTech Thai startups in the country. This, along with consumer behaviours that are growing along digital lines and consumers looking for safer options, has positioned Thailand to lead the way in enhancing digital facilities and promote greater financial inclusion in line with Thailand 4.0’s innovation drive.

ASEAN Fintech Landscape

Even before the pandemic, the Thai government has been working to encourage digital payment for consumers and businesses. The pandemic further pushed this effort; the ongoing shifts toward digital payments, digital investments, neobanking, alternative financing and alternative lending significantly have increased during the pandemic and will only rise in the coming years.

Transaction Value by Segment

The government seeks to encourage the much-required collaboration between the traditional Thai banking companies and FinTech companies for helping the banks become more agile and compete with their counterparts globally. The Thai government is also fostering closer cooperation between Thai regulators and FinTech companies for minimising any obstacles to its FinTech development. 

Thailand is highly advanced with respect to the use of the internet compared to several countries. Globally, the time spent on the internet on an average by a user is around 6.43 hours per day. However, in Thailand, this average is around 9 hours per day. As per JP Morgan, around 50% of internet users in Thailand make mobile payments and almost 71% shop online using mobile devices per month. These figures represent a high level of dependency on mobile and online transactions. 

The demand for FinTech services is projected to grow swiftly as tech giants such as Alibaba, IBM, Tenpay, Apple and Facebook extend their activities into Thai financial markets. Thai banking institutions are quickly embracing the changes made possible by new innovative technologies for catering to the new generation of consumers.

Blockchain

Many industries and government authorities outside of the fintech industry have been progressive in embracing blockchain. A few of the recent developments in the adoption of blockchain technology include the partnership between the Customs Department of Thailand, IBM and logistics provider Maersk for deploying a digital trade platform.

Big companies in Thailand are pouring funds into Bitcoin mining as the trade and investment in cryptocurrency booms across the country as young investors look for better returns from their savings amid low-interest rates and an economic slowdown. Looking at the rise in investment in cryptocurrencies, Binance, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world by trading volume, is gearing up to set up a crypto exchange in Thailand.

Cryptocurrency

The use of cryptocurrency for payment is still limited in Thailand. However, cryptocurrency is now a very popular investment alternative in Thailand. According to reports issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission of Thailand (SEC), the monthly transactional value on Thai cryptocurrency exchanges reached THB 90 Bn in January 2021 as the prices of bitcoin soared and reached new highs attracting the Thai public’s attention. 

The country has become a front-runner in the region in the crypto industry as well as other financial technologies. Around 10% of its internet users have some form of cryptocurrency investment, helping Thailand secure the second spot in the crypto market just behind Nigeria as per 2021 data. The government has been supportive of the ownership of cryptocurrencies in Thailand which has led to this growth in digital currencies in the country. 

Digital Banking  

Virtual banking services have grown rapidly in Thailand in the consumer lifestyles space which has led to a rise of tech development companies. Digital banking is the new norm in Thailand for banking and financial institutions. Banking and financial institution have in Thailand curated roadmaps for offering better services through digital banking functionality to their customers. This has been essential for Thai banking and financial institutions to stay competitive in this digital era. 

To meet the Thai consumer expectations and demands, traditional banks in Thailand such as Siam Commercial Bank and Kasikornbank have been developing online channels to reduce their “bricks and mortar” presence. The banking institutions are able to drastically reduce their costs and help them in paying attractive returns on savings to their customers.  

There’s a rise of B2B fintech firms in Thailand, especially the ones offering back-end infrastructure for the banks and other financial institutions. Thai B2B fintech companies have the potential to expand the market to the regional or even at the global level.

Several fintech firms in the country have been in the process of developing financial services such as payment via a digital platform. With a digital-only bank, customers may not face problems of complex hidden fees, making direct deposits, or making payments via different channels. 

Algorithm Stock Trading 

The swift change of technology has affected the financial markets in Thailand significantly. To enhance efficiency and liquidity in the market, the SET (Stock Exchange of Thailand) allows Thai stockbrokers to offer their clienteles algorithmic and automatic stock trading. 

Algorithmic trading employs a computer program that follows a specified set of instructions for placing a trade. In theory, the trade could generate profits at a speed and frequency that are impossible for any human trader. 

Thai investors are accepting algorithm trading as the new financial technology, but still, there are concerns about their reliability and profitability. Such exposures and risk offer business opportunities in Thailand to tech companies to develop platforms that can build and improve investors’ trust in algorithm trading as a profitable and reliable trading strategy.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the key technology that is disrupting all aspects of financial service. In near future, banks in Thailand will move from ‘wealth managers’ to ‘data managers’. At this point, fintech would serve their purpose and use AI tools for supporting the bank operations in data management, information security, and generating additional income using that data. Fintech would develop a channel for the financial institutions in Thailand to access and closely engage with their customers. Banks would recommend financial products to their customers after their AI tools analyze the customer profile. Further, AI would be applied in data security as well as an authentication protocol for ensuring safe and efficient financial transactions. 

Starting a Fintech Company in Thailand

The tech industry and startup landscape in Thailand are booming. For the last few years, big corporates have taken a keen interest in Thai startups and have established accelerators for driving growth for businesses using financial technology. Entrepreneurs and investors both within Thailand and overseas are flocking in to take advantage of its strategic location, ease of doing business policies, well-connected transport infrastructure, lively community of startups and digital businesses.
 

With the level of digital banking that has risen to new heights, Thailand offers a solid policy concerning financial technology and offer attractive incentives for starting a company in ThailandBusiness consulting services in Thailand can help entrepreneurs with the setting-up of a Fintech company in Thailand and also guide them regarding the various Fintech regulations in this country.

References

https://www.uobgroup.com/techecosystem/news-insights-fintech-in-thailand-3q-2021.html?

https://research.hktdc.com/en/article/NzMzODE1MDk5

https://www.bbvaresearch.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/June-2017-ASEAN-Fintech-Trends1.pdf

The post Prospects of Fintech Companies in Thailand appeared first on StartUp in Thailand.

Source: Asian Correspondent

Few Technology Trends for Automotive Industry in Thailand

Thailand’s vibrant automotive industry offers foreign OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturer) competition and a vast network of supporting industries. As Thailand continues to expand its automotive manufacturing base, the presence of auto part suppliers is increasing – setting up R&D (Research and Development) departments to better serve their customers.

Thailand’s Motor Vehicle Production Over the Years

With one of the major markets for automobiles in Southeast Asia, Thailand’s vehicle production reached around 470k units in Q1 of 2021. Compared to other ASEAN countries, Thailand was the leader in the production of motor vehicles in 2020. Thailand’s production surpassed Malaysia and Indonesia in production volume.

The Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) expects the production of automobiles in 2022 to be approximately 1.7 to 1.8 million units, with domestic sales in the range of 800k – 850k units and overall exports of 900k – 950k units.

Thailand continues to be the central auto-motive hub within the South East Asian region, with the best-in-class automotive supply and logistics chain. Whilst the auto industry suffered significantly in the last few years, the underlying trend suggests that the Thai auto industry is back on the growth track.

Thailand 4.0 Scheme to Boost Innovation

Thailand has responded to the Fourth Industrial Revolution happening globally by establishing its new economic model under the Thailand 4.0 scheme that is based on an innovation-driven economy.

Thailand 4.0 Scheme

Thailand 4.0 readiness has identified its auto industry as the largest beneficiary of this innovation leaden drive due to its well-established infrastructure and skilled personnel as the auto manufacturing hub for several foreign automakers.

Major Automotive Players in Thailand

At present, there is a lot of foreign investment in Thailand from mainland China, Japan and South Korea. The country’s Eastern Economic Corridor Office of Thailand (EEC) aims to promote investment opportunities in Thailand for industries that are considered to be a driving force for the sustainable economic growth of the country. And among the key areas of further development is the technological and innovative advancements in its automotive sector.

The country has developed from an automotive component assembler into a top automotive producing and exporting hub. Thailand today ships the country manufactured vehicles to over 100 countries globally.

Market Share in Thailand by OEM

Thailand has an established presence of almost all the global leading automotive manufacturers, assemblers as well as component makers. Companies such as Toyota, Honda, Mitsubishi, Isuzu, BMW and Nissan together account for the largest share of the roughly two million vehicles produced in Thailand annually.

Supply Chain Operational Shifts

Since automotive components are difficult to transport, the shift to manufacturing these parts locally helps and expedites the supply chain. Due to this shift, both the cost of transportation costs as well as the time to deliver them are reduced. Companies within Thailand are shifting locally due to the saving in resources from the accelerated supply chain. Additionally, a shift in the country’s automotive industry is its rise in the scale of production; once a specific level of local output is achieved, localisation becomes cheaper and more efficient than importing from abroad. In Thailand, this shift has been apparent; in short, the Thai automotive industry’s supply chain has streamlined and has become much more efficient in the last few years owing to its technological advancements and localisation.

Thailand’s Board of Investment (BOI) Initiatives

The auto industry has been experiencing a gradual shift in Thailand from a manufacturing to a high-value manufacturing economy after all the efforts it has put into promoting the use of science, innovation and advanced technology. In parallel to this, Thailand has also ensured the development of infrastructure and the right ecosystem for driving business opportunities in Thailand in its auto sector.

Thailand’s BOI has supported Thailand’s economic transformation by incessantly improving its promotional incentives for strengthening the country’s position as a preferred investment destination for automakers. The BOI’s incentives have enhanced the business competitiveness in Thailand as many start up business in Thailand are offering technological disruption to the Thai auto sector.

Thanks to the Thai startup ecosystem and BOI initiatives ranging from infrastructure development to continuous government support and attractive promotional measures, the country has welcomed investments over THB 900 Bn alone baht in 2018.

The Thai government is planning to incentivize people to purchase EVs by establishing a fund for subsidizing up to 20 per cent of the EV prices. Also, they’re increasing the taxes on almost all motor vehicles, including passenger cars, hybrids, eco-cars, and plug-in hybrids, for allowing different vehicle tax rates for EVs. 

Growing Hub for Electronic Vehicles (EV)

The government of Thailand has ambitious plans to turn the country into a Southeast Asian manufacturing hub of electric vehicles. Big companies in Thailand are preparing to invest considerably in a greener transportation mode after the National Electric Vehicle Policy Committee suggested that by 2030

Thailand’s 50% total auto production would be comprised of electric vehicles.

The message to auto manufacturers and business outsourcing companies is to grab the business opportunities Thailand is offering in the necessary infrastructure for supporting electric vehicles. As per BOI the investment in EV production and its infrastructure reached crossed THB 79 Bn between 2017 and 2019. This figure is projected to rise at a faster pace over the next 3-5 years.

Toyota has the first-mover advantage as it was the first auto manufacturer to make EVs in Thailand. The number of EV manufacturers in the country is increasing including auto parts makers, those are gradually switching to produce EV parts which would create supply chains ready for the development of the EV ecosystem.

The global demand for EVs is growing. Globally, the number of electric vehicles is expected to rise to 35% of overall vehicle consumption by 2040. To help spur the auto industry, the Thai government is actively promoting foreign manufacturers to the country as their base for the production of EVs in the region. Thailand’s BOI is also offering generous tax incentives to auto manufacturers as well as the auto parts industry.

Supporting Technological Advancement in EVs

Thailand’s NSTDA (National Science and Technology Development Agency) is entrusted with the crucial task of accelerating technology and innovation development for enhancing Thailand’s competitiveness in the global EV market. NSTDA has been working in tandem with partners from the government, private, academic and non-government sectors, both at domestic as well as at international levels.

The Thai government’s policy and goals on electric vehicles are becoming more concrete, such as offering support for operators willing to install vehicle charging stations. The Thai government has also set a rate of THB 2.6 per unit for electricity charging across Thailand, which is comparatively cheaper than home electricity rates. The support also BOI privileges designed to encourage starting a business in Thailand in high-tech automotive parts like battery parts, power electronics devices, electric motors and charging stations.

The policy of NSTDA is to comprehensively support the EV technology and to grow the advanced knowledge among the agency personnel on designing, developing, and testing the EV parts, and built units that could be key potentials in the global niche market of EVs.

Conclusion

Such an optimistic outlook bodes well for automakers, ancillary companies and high-tech industries. As the country gears up to enter the Thailand 4.0 area, system suppliers and equipment makers would find a lot of business opportunities in Thailand in helping manufacturers in upgrading their manufacturing capabilities, further improving their efficiencies and quality, and taking their production to the next level.

The initial trend of a solid transformation is already taking shape, with BOI’s attractive incentives serving as a crucial catalyst. The success of these innovative companies will inspire locals to open small business in Thailand. With this rise, foreign businesses would explore investment opportunities in Thailand and indigenous businesses would follow in their footsteps. When a change comes on a large scale, an economic transformation follows, thus enhancing national competitiveness.

The post Few Technology Trends for Automotive Industry in Thailand appeared first on StartUp in Thailand.

Source: Asian Correspondent

Benefits of Launching your Start-up in Thailand

Looking to launch your startup in Thailand? Thailand is globally acknowledged for its rich culture, exquisite cuisine and natural beauty. But you might not be aware that Thailand is also a popular business destination for both Thai as well as foreign businesses to launch their startups. The GDP (Gross Domestic Product in Thailand was US $501.79 Bn last year in 2020, and is expected to reach 546.00 USD Billion by the end of 2021 as per World Bank.

Thailand GDP Over the Years

Thailand has a comparatively low cost of living, together with high-speed internet access practically everywhere, stable power, and low cost of food, housing, medical care, as well as transportation costs. Thailand is well ahead of the curve in enticing talent from the world over. Obviously, these factors aren’t exclusive to Thailand. However, what sets the country apart and makes it attractive for foreign investors is its strategic location and government support, plus all the benefits it provides to businesses in the country. Let’s have a look at some of the key reasons why Thailand is becoming such a popular business destination for startups.

Key Benefits of Launching your Own Startup in Thailand

Strategic Location – Thailand is located between China and India. Many foreign investors find that Thailand’s location is ideal to penetrate the thriving Asian Market. Its strategic location attracts many foreigners to establish a business in Thailand and to access the Asian markets. Not only is it suitable to trade with these two neighboring nations, but Thailand is also a member of ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations). Investors engaging in Thailand would have accessible trade routes with Singapore, Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Laos, Brunei, Myanmar and Cambodia. 

Government Incentives – The government of Thailand is quite supportive of companies setting up business in Thailand, including businesses owned by foreigners. The government offers several business opportunities in Thailand for attracting more FDI (foreign direct investment). The government of Thailand has made the registration process for the companies pretty straightforward. Hence, foreign investors could easily do business in Thailand without any problems and also the company formation in Thailand is also streamlined. The government also took initiatives to enhance the business landscape in Thailand.

Low-Cost Labour – Thailand has a population of 70 million (as of 2021), which means there’s more workforce accessible to a company in Thailand. The literacy rate in Thailand is around 94%, which implies that Thailand offers an educated labor force. The Thai workforce is comparatively cost-effective with respect to their daily wages. In Thailand, the average daily wages range from $6 to $8.

Ease of Doing Business in Thailand Over the Decade

Ease of Doing Business – As per the World Bank’s annual rating, the country is currently ranked 21st among 190 among other economies. This rank is apparent enough that it’s easy to start a business in Thailand. The ease of doing business in Thailand improved a lot from 26 in the last decade to 21, which infers is a positive signal for investors both domestic and overseas.
Promising Tourism Industry – It’s a well-known fact that Thailand is among the best tourist destinations and also one of the most visited nations in the world. This is very beneficial for businesses that are dependent on a foreign clientele. Businesses such as restaurants and hotels get the most out of the tourism industry.
Diversified Industries – Thailand has a vast and dynamic manufacturing sector that produces an assortment of goods from toys, jewelry and furniture to rubber and fish products to name a few. This sturdiness in the manufacturing and FMCG sector has enabled the country to lead the trade and commerce within the region.

Thai Government’s 2021 Incentives 

Foreign investors, professionals as well as retirees would be able to relish new incentives in Thailand, as the Thai government looks to interest high-earning foreign residents in helping Thailand’s COVID-19 recovery. On September 14, 2021, Thailand’s cabinet through a resolution introduced tax, immigration, and land ownership incentives designed for skilled professionals and foreign investors. These incentives are efforts to stimulate the country’s economy which has been severely impacted by the pandemic. As per a government spokesperson, the Thai government assumes the incentives would attract a horde of foreign investors as well as professionals in the coming five years, that would contribute over US $30 Bn to Thailand market economy.

These incentives are of three categories:

Immigration – Qualified applicants could receive a long-term resident visa for 10 years to live in the country, including spouses and children. Automatic work permits would also be issued to qualified applicants. This is one of a kind visa that didn’t exist previously in Thailand.
As opposed to other Thailand visas, those on this visa won’t have to provide written notices to the respective authorities for a stay exceeding 90 days in Thailand.

Tax – The qualified applicants would be able to enjoy income tax rates the same as available to the Thai citizens, and tax exemptions for the income earned overseas. Moreover, the qualified applicants will be able to apply for a 17% fixed income tax rate in line with the Eastern Economic Corridor scheme.

Land and property – These qualified applicants would be able to enjoy eased out restrictions on foreign ownership as well rent of property and land.

These incentives would be supervised by the county’s Office of National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC). They would be there from 2022-2026 for five fiscal years, at which their performance will be evaluated and a further decision on whether to further extend them.

Finding the Productive Environment for your Startup in Thailand

Although you might be lured by the benefits that Thailand has to offer, you still might need some hand-holding opening a business in Thailand once you have arrived in the country. Even with a lot of streamlining of the process, still, a lot of operational details needs to be taken care of before starting a business in Thailand.

As a foreigner, you may not be conversant with the company requisition process. Therefore, for easing the registration process, it’s better to contact a startup consulting in Thailand.  Business startup consulting firms in Thailand can work with you in reviewing your business model and assist you in identifying strategic initiatives that would support your business objectives. A Thailand representative through facilitated sessions would develop the right strategy for your business development in Asia. Also, these Asian business consultants would help you in executing, monitoring and making ongoing adjustments to your business strategy.

Developing a robust business plan is crucial for a successful startup. Consulting firms in Thailand work with you in building robust plans which involves detailed strategies such as finance, marketing, operations, sales, supply chain, engineering and procurement. 

Final Word

Along with the rapid growth Thailand is relishing, it also reaps the benefits of being a friendly, competent, hospitable culture immersed in history. Challenges are there everywhere in the world. Add start-up to that equation and the rate of failure is intimidating. But individuals don’t get into start-ups to be unsuccessful or repeat their past, they work to see that their ideas or concepts come to life. Thailand has made all the efforts to improve the country’s economy and promote foreign relations and technological advancement. It’s no surprise that Thailand is today among the popular business destinations for foreign investors. The foundation of the dreams starts here in Thailand and it’s exhilarating to imagine what boundless harvests lay ahead in Thailand’s evolving economic future.

Interesting Reads :

Overview of Thailand’s Startup Ecosystem
Critical Success Factors for Startups in Thailand
The Importance of Consulting a Startup Specialist
Why 90% of Startups Fail and How to Avoid It
Opportunities for Startups in Thailand

The post Benefits of Launching your Start-up in Thailand appeared first on StartUp in Thailand.

Source: Asian Correspondent

2022 – Strategies for the hospitality industry to bounce back

The pandemic no doubt had made an unparalleled impact on the tourism and hospitality industry. It seems that the pandemic had forced businesses globally to respond to the innovative changes in the market, but the reality is that the pandemic just augmented most of the conceivable changes we expected for the future. A business that can navigate through the pandemic crisis quickly is generally the one that is flexible and has already had plans in place in response to the probable future.

Now that the Thai economy is starting to recover, it becomes crucial for a business in Thailand to take a holistic approach to plan. Managing the operational and commercial issues on an ad-hoc basis won’t work anymore as most of the changes observed in the Thai market today are likely to continue beyond the pandemic.

Thailand’s Recovery to Gain Traction

According to Fitch Ratings, Thailand’s economy will recover and gain traction in 2022, reinforced by significant improvements in vaccination rates, supportive global growth environment and business reopening in Thailand. The return of tourism would be gradual, and as per Fitch Thai GDP will reach pre-pandemic levels by 2023. In the backdrop of the Thai government’s decision to re-open facilities and businesses, the hospitality business houses and even Thai startups are stepping up and adopting new practices for ensuring the safety of guests and staff while complying with local regulatory guidance in place.

Quarantine-free Travel for Fully Vaccinated Travelers

Thailand is resuming its quarantine-free travel from the 1st of February. Pandemic related travel curbs have hit Thailand’s tourism-dominated economy, sending its visitor dwindling to a trickle. Fully vaccinated travelers would be allowed to enter the country under the “test and go” scheme provided the visitors take covid tests on the first as well as the fifth day after arriving in Thailand. Visitors are also required to isolate themselves at their hotel while waiting for the results of their test and need to download a tracking app for ensuring they obey the rules.

Strategies to follow by Hospitality Industry in Thailand

The need of the hour for the hospitality sector in Thailand is to take steps strategically for survival, revive services and build capacities, and thrive once the pandemic subsides. But what are the strategic and appropriate steps the tourism industry in Thailand should take in this global crisis?

Invest in Digital

Digitalization has been a recurrent issue in the hospitality business in recent times. In the past, hotels in Thailand delegated this key strategic task to other organizations, like Online Travel Agencies and Review platforms, which in turn is offering investment opportunities in Thailand in the online hospitality sector. Most of the hotels have, since then, recognized the importance of digital presence, particularly for boosting their direct bookings.

Since the onset of the pandemic, digital booking has grown and has contributed a bigger chunk of the overall volume in Thailand. As physical travel agencies are losing business in Thailand, it’s easy to comprehend that the already declining traditional means of booking hotels are now doomed. Ultimately, digitalization is going to take over the overall hotel booking market in Thailand. To benefit from this new status-quo, a Thai business involved in the hospitality sector should pull every string they can for optimizing their digital presence.

Reimagining Marketing Strategy

In the recent few years, outbound marketing hasn’t been a priority for hotels in Thailand. Especially online, where there’s stiff competition with OTAs, marketing might feel like tossing pebbles at a pool: a waste of money, time, and energy.

However, the pandemic has caused the hotel customers’ base to shrink drastically. For refilling this clientele, hoteliers should work with marketing consulting firms which can help them in making people desire to travel again. This isn’t a small task, but with the right business consultant services, hotels could start rebuilding the trust of their guests.

Special Offers and Campaigns

While compulsory shutdowns have disrupted the tourism industry and consequently the hotel industry in Thailand, they see some hope and new opportunities, as the Thai government plans to reopen tourism in Thailand for visitors. A key strategy for the hospitality industry is marketing campaigns targeted toward individuals looking to get away from their homes with innovative offers, such as reservations for a few hours, all-inclusive packages, etc. Businesses should leverage by attracting millennials with offers, who are eager to explore and excited for tailored experiences.

Advanced AI solutions need to be developed to make these campaigns targeted and actionable. Hotels can use advanced analytics on user actions, customer data, etc. which can help them in creating targeted campaigns offering a high degree of success which can also be used for future campaigns. Application of successful campaigns require proficient and expressed professionals thereby creating opportunities for start-up business in Thailand.

Guest engagement

Businesses need to be on top of their game while engaging with their patrons. One way is to keep their websites and mobile apps intuitive and interactive, provide regular notifications informing guests about hotel offerings, local attractions, etc., and also ensure that hotel reservations offer flexible cancellation policies. The websites and especially the mobile apps should be interactive to ensure that the hotel guests are able to get their concerns or questions addressed instantly either with the help of live agents or via bots. Hotels should also make sure that their guests stay engaged even after guests check out for facilitating the flow of accurate information about the risk of exposure or the spread of infection.

Emergency Readiness

Businesses should always be ready in advance for the unexpected outbreak, monitor early signs, and manage room inventory so that there are always enough spare rooms for moving guests. Employ inventory optimization software for accommodating emergency readiness protocols. Such software could be leveraged for quickly deploying emergency readiness schemes.

Innovation

As we have witnessed, the Thai hotel customer base was reduced significantly by the pandemic. To stand out from the competition, hotels in Thailand need to differentiate themselves for the better. Apart from outperforming the competition in the digital and marketing fields, hotels can seek help from business consulting services for implementing innovative solutions and strategies.

Innovation at times is a gamble, as new solutions aren’t always scalable and it might not pay off in the longer run. However, since the pandemic outbreak has triggered a great hospitality reset, it’s the best time to take calculated risks. A disruptive solution might be the decisive factor and the difference that a business needs to make the most of this new environment.

Hotel Renovation and Maintenance

Pandemic outbreak doesn’t mean that hoteliers have closed their doors and are waiting for the pandemic and the lockdown to end. This break offers a perfect time to improve and do some catch up. Whether it’s completing property improvement plans or spontaneous renovation, there won’t be a better time than this. For starters, hotel businesses could make a list of things, items, and everything that requires repair, check maintenance supplies, railings and balcony checks, laundry room systems check, life safety checks, elevators, pool systems, check lights and fittings, etc.

Staying Informed about Available Reliefs

Businesses not just in the hospitality sector but overall, should be aware of the Thai government’s financial support and assistance. The Thai government has offered various incentives such as deferment of payments, tax cuts, support and grant funds for starting a business in Thailand, low-interest working capital loans to open small businesses in Thailand, etc.

Business consultant services can also help businesses in Thailand to keep up with the government’s relief and assistance programs and all the latest developments which can help them cope with the current crisis and stay ahead in business. 

The Future of Hospitality

We have seen how pandemic has brushed the old strategies in managing the hospitality sector. The hospitality market in Thailand needs to redesign its way of operation and build anew. Aforesaid are a few pathways and strategies hoteliers could use to thrive in this brand-new world.

Over the long run, hoteliers would have to adjust to the new status-quo and continue to innovate and be a part of the “new normal”. Though, the new normal isn’t the same in the hotel industry: it’s what hoteliers decide to do with their limited resources. The Thai hospitality industry should intend to lead the new normal by being rational and visionary and taking brave steps.

Interesting Reads :
Hospitality Industry and Digital Age
Hospitality Industry
Business Relations between India and Thailand
Thailand Government – How Supportive is it for Business ?
Fastest way To make $1 Million in Thailand

The post 2022 – Strategies for the hospitality industry to bounce back appeared first on StartUp in Thailand.

Source: Asian Correspondent

Critical Success Factors for Startups in Thailand

Thailand’s growing economy holds enormous promise for startups due to its strategic location and low-cost labour. But navigating the Thai market for unlocking this promise isn’t easy. It’s because more than any other global region, Thailand represents a grouping of economically, culturally, and commercially distinct regions. Investors and entrepreneurs alike need to consider the localization paradox facing startups in Thailand.

Thailand has made its mark globally both in terms of an attractive tourist destination as well as a profitable business setting. Overseas investors have proved this and attest to the success of setting up businesses in Thailand.

Starting a business in Thailand is always a difficult prospect. How do startups in Thailand overcome the hardships? Here’s a guide to staking a claim for Thailand’s startup success stories.

Embracing Partners

Ensuring a positive relationship with other Thai businesses is crucial to launching a startup in Thailand. However, for a startup to then grow its market, especially considering its limited resources, it’s imperious to leverage local Thai businesses rather than building everything in-house. Partnerships enable rapid market growth and enable startups to roll out products and services faster and more efficiently. Contrarywise this, building in-house is often more expensive and takes longer.

Developing and maintaining partnerships is particularly valuable in Thailand given its diversity as a region. Startups should partner with consulting firms in Thailand as well as local companies. A partnership success story worth mentioning is the partnership between Lalamove – a Hong Kong-based logistics startup and Line – a popular chat app in Thailand in 2016. Combining forces to create LINEMAN, Line used Lalamove’s delivery network for its entry into the delivery business, while Lalamove leveraged Line’s Thai user’s network of over 30 million for scaling into the Thai market.

Engaging With Thai Regulators

Each time a company enters or rolls out a new service in Thailand, it should initiate and engage in a proper dialogue with Thai regulators in advance. One of the key benefits of engaging early is it enables startups with an opportunity to build trust with Thai regulators. The difference between a successful startup and failed business model in Thailand could very well boil down to mutual understanding and transparency with Thai regulators–to the trust that the technology it uses is secure, that the startup promotes the best interests of Thai consumers, and that the startup’s goals and objectives are aligned with Thailand’s national objectives.

Early Expansion

The foremost lesson for an existing startup in Thailand is to expand early–to activate and develop a market expansion strategy from its onset instead of waiting to scale and becoming entrenched in a single region in Thailand. The reason this factor is critical is because the experience of a startup scaling in Thailand is particularly determined by the rate it expanded across multiple regions, its relationship with Thai regulators and partner network, and its product development. E-commerce giant Lazada and transportation services app Grab are two key examples of businesses adopting the mindset of scaling from day one.

Wise Expansion

Early expansion doesn’t mean startups should expand throughout Thailand and nearby countries without proper market research. As mentioned above, localization holds the key in Thailand. Thailand market research firms can help you with this regard as each country contains its own consumer habits, consumer spending power and other market nuances.

Particularly for startups based in Thailand with fewer resources and capital, it’s imperative to be capital-efficient and ensure you get the optimal return for each dollar you spend. With this in mind, selecting the right market strategy in Thailand for early expansion will have reaching implications with scalable company growth.

Adaptability of Products/Services

While early expansion and having a dialogue with regulators and partners is crucial for scaling across Thailand, startups in Thailand can’t afford to lose focus on the development of their core offerings, and adaptation of those offerings in the Thai market. Often, businesses that are focused on a particular country for several years, take product development lightly and don’t have the budget and time for investing to differentiate their product experience in the Thai market.

Investing In Talent

The next success factor surrounds experienced talent, which is hard to find in Thailand. When a startup wishes to expand or start a business in Thailand, it is imperative to invest in robust senior talent. A leader who would manage the Thai market is very crucial, needs to be culturally sensitive, understands the business model thoroughly, and be watchful enough to learn from the Thai market and respond accordingly.

While employees have their influence over the execution of the overall company’s vision, it’s still the company’s vision at the end of the day. It implies when hiring the initial members of the team, a startup in Thailand needs to look for people demonstrating a clear understanding of its vision and having ideas that would help the business. A startup must have people who understand its purpose, its customers, and how to make the vision of the startup a reality.

Proper Marketing

Finally, you have a business in Thailand with the finest product line, still, people aren’t buying? Probably you haven’t done enough market search or selected the right niche very carefully to meet audience requirements. Reaching out to potential customers towards your business entails persistent efforts in marketing. If you’re starting a business in Thailand, you would need the help of Thailand market research firms that helps you in focusing on the overall process of providing customer service, choosing the right niche, delivering a message to the right audience, and promoting the niche in Thai market.

Marketing your business in Thailand is an art form in itself. Thailand is becoming more heterogeneous, but the foundations of its culture won’t budge for anything: Thailand’s traditions, humour, protocols, discourses, are unchanging and at times stubbornly unaccommodating. Hence, the identity of your product offerings needs to seamlessly fashion itself. Cultural sensitivity and sympathetic protocol are of paramount importance for marketing in Thailand. The intricacies of its beliefs can make or break your business.

Bottom Line

When setting up a company in Thailand, it’s tough to do everything right and avoid any mistakes. There’s much work to be done, several KPIs to keep track of, and limited helping hands. In addition, you need to be aware of external forces beyond your control.

There’s no guarantee that a startup would succeed, but with a robust strategy built upon the above success factors, there’s a fighting chance that the startup’s idea might succeed. Startups that approach their business strategically without leaving anything to chance, generally stay in business longer and achieve scalability faster.

The Thai economy is ripe for disruption and the country is emerging as a mecca for both overseas and local startups with the Thai government concerted efforts of redirecting the country’s economy to a tech-based economy from an agriculture-based economy.

The post Critical Success Factors for Startups in Thailand appeared first on StartUp in Thailand.

Source: Asian Correspondent

Hospitality Industry and Digital Age

Most hospitality businesses have been propelled by digital disruption with most executives globally admitting that the transformative has impacted their business to a great extent. It is, therefore, crucial to identify digital disruption approaches and perspectives and to digital implementation across the hospitality industry which offers lucrative investment opportunities in Thailand.

Following weak business operations in 2020, hoteliers have continued to see depressed conditions throughout 2021. The first shoots of recovery would start to break through from the mid of 2022 and will regain pre-pandemic levels by 2023. Against this backdrop, Thai domestic tourism is recovering at a faster pace, thanks to relentless efforts and proactive policies set by the Thai government for stimulating demand. By the early half of 2021, the vaccination programs started to translate into a herd of foreign tourists restarting their travel, helped by a recovering economy and new entrepreneurs starting a business in Thailand contributing to the strong growth potential in Thai hospitality industry. 

In the post-pandemic world, hospitality players are moving swiftly to overhaul their business operations onto a more sustainable footing by adopting modern technology and developing their understanding of diverse and varied consumer needs and feeding this information into their advanced tech-driven models to offer their consumers customized travel experiences.

The hospitality sector in Thailand has a central role in its economy because it is among the most popular tourist destinations in the world. This is partly due to the world-class quality of hospitality the country offers to its tourists. As per The Travel & Tourist Competitiveness Report, 2019 by World Economic Forum, Thailand tops almost all the KPIs in the region as shown in the image above. The Thai hospitality sector has been the frontrunner in driving revenue for the country as well as offering business opportunities in Thailand to domestic as well as foreign players.

In addition, Thailand benefits from competitive pricing for accommodation and commute, offering a low cost of living for travellers as well as ex-pats. Beyond this, the Thai hospitality industry benefits from its comprehensive, extensive transportation network, national infrastructure that is being upgraded at a rapid pace, along with the rising number of low-cost carriers serving the domestic market. These factors have offered it an edge over its competitors. The Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index compiled by the WEF ranked Thailand on the 31st spot out of 140 nations.

For hotel operators in Thailand, their main revenue generating source is room charges which account for approx. 65%-70% of their total revenue. The remainder is generated majorly from the sale of food and drinks.

Hotel Chains in Thailand

The Need for Digitalization Driven by Pandemic

It’s no secret that expectations from consumers are changing the guest experience fundamentally throughout the hospitality sector. Anyone who has travelled to Thailand in recent times can attest to the way the hospitality industry has changed dramatically over the last few years, largely in response to the pandemic and customers’ expectations. The restrictions due to pandemic together with customer expectations have heightened the ease and simplicity of technologies such as mobile, social media and cloud which have helped hospitality companies to deliver instant access and services to their customers.

Improving Guest Experience Through Technology

The notion of improving guest experience has revolutionized the use of technology and has changed business conversations at the strategic level. Companies are gaining enormous benefits from the data collated by all the smartphone apps, social media posts, lobby sensors, etc. However, companies must ensure that they focus on the vision that has been rebuilt around their guest. It’s all about knowing your customer and using innovative technologies to create a personalized experience for them.

Hospitality companies are establishing enterprise-wide digital business strategies for delivering the same.

Such technological and digital transformations have spawned foreign investment in Thailand and some fascinating shifts in the Thai hospitality space are listed below:

Personalization with integration

Your guests won’t think in terms of your line-of-business functions, so there’s no need of organizing information in silos. Putting your guest engagement first, however, requires businesses to understand their guest as an individual, making their systems integration crucial. For instance, most leading hotel chains in Thailand have integrated their restaurant food and beverage (F&B) and leisure systems with their hotel application. They have integrated that data as a key element in their digital strategy. Once that information is aggregated, it could be served as well as accessed by guests using their own devices, allowing them to book a spa treatment, a table at your restaurants or check out any time during their stay.

Mobile Devices and Apps

Mobile devices also play a significant part in enabling guests to personalize their experience with the help of their own devices. For instance, at some Thai hotels, guests can plug their own devices into the in-room entertainment systems so that they could easily access media of their own choice.

Data-Driven Consistent Guest Experience

Consistency remains one of the key challenges for Thai hotels and F&B operators when it comes to the customer experience. It takes a huge effort to create and manage any successful restaurant, so how do entrepreneurs repeat that success? The answer is the technology that does the work for you. Rather than storing all the business and customer-related information on an isolated on-premise point-of-sale (POS) system at every, hotels and restaurant chains are shifting to cloud applications that could be deployed and accessed from anywhere. 

It’s one of the major trends designed to improve the customer experience. The business could leverage better and centralized reporting for analysing all sorts of issues, from food costs to guest preferences. One restaurant chain, for instance, uses a cloud application for tracking and managing data on the vendors it uses globally. A restaurant’s brand reputation is based on how well it knows its own ingredients and where they’ve sourced from. Such centralization of information using cloud technology offers them a view of what’s happening in their supplier pipeline.

Brand Recognition and Direct Relationships

Brand recognition is the crux to customer loyalty, as hotels are using digital technology through improved loyalty programs and better guest recognition with the help of analytics, and guest-facing apps. By improving customer relationships, they also improve the chances of their guests booking rooms directly with the hotel instead of routing through Online Travel Agents. The guest engagement landscape is changing and would continue to do so over the coming years. A direct relationship with the customer becomes relevant to stay competitive. Ultimately, customers would gain big from this as they’ll see an even more range of services that are customized to their personal preferences.

Looking Ahead

To continue the momentum, the hospitality industry in Thailand would need to continue building on its digital strategies for reaching more customers and new markets, such as:

Bottom Line

Technological advancements are having a large impact on the Thai hospitality sector. Along with a persistent commitment to low tax rates, stable currency, committed government, and sensible regulation, the Thai hospitality sector gearing up for a powerful comeback. Painful as the pandemic has been, huge opportunities await for start up business in Thailand and corporations alike for creating fresh innovation, as the Thai industry emerges from the pandemic. 

There are immense opportunities for starting a company in Thailand in the hospitality space or as a tech service provider to these companies. One thing is definite as Thailand is powering up as an innovation and technology powerhouse, the moment of digital reckoning for its hospitality sector has begun.

The post Hospitality Industry and Digital Age appeared first on StartUp in Thailand.

Source: Asian Correspondent

Trade between India and Thailand

Thailand, the second largest economy in ASEAN after Indonesia, is an upper middle-income country with an open economy, a gross domestic product (GDP) of $503.5 billion and a negative 6.1 percent annual growth in 2020. Thailand is an export-dependent economy. Reports suggest that Thailand had exported a total of $226.7 billion worth of goods in 2020. The top export items in terms of value are motor cars, parts and accessories (9%), electronic goods and computers (8%), precious stones and jewelry (8%), rubber products (5%), and plastics (3%).

Trade relations between India and Thailand have grown by leaps and bounds during the last few  years, though it halted momentarily due to the global pandemic. In 2019, India did not export any services to Thailand nor did any export happen from Thailand to India.

The Thai economy is projected to grow by one to two percent in 2021 as the negative impact of a surge of COVID-19 in Thailand offsets the positive effects of the recovery of the world economy and global trade volumes, and government stimulus measures. Thailand owes its close trade and diplomatic ties with India to historic, cultural and social reasons.

Two-way trade in 2018 totalled USD12.46 billion with USD7.60 billion in Thailand exports to India and USD4.86 billion in Indian exports to Thailand. Thailand ranks as India’s fifth-largest trading partner in ASEAN.

The ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) blueprint 2025 is projected to boost investment and business opportunities in the coming years. The ultimate aim of the AEC blueprint is to achieve the ASEAN common market with intermediate steps taken to gradually bring greater integration among the member countries.

The benefits of this blueprint to countries doing business with ASEAN would be in the form of seamless movement of goods, tariff rationalisation and a more open and predictable investment regime in all ASEAN countries. This broadens up the opportunity for Indian companies to access the USD 2.8 trillion ASEAN markets through Thailand.

An ASEAN common market has huge potential for anyone trading with it. Economists predict it to become the fourth-largest economy in the world by 2030 surpassed only by the US, China and the EU.

Both Thailand and India have been touted as beneficiaries of the protracted trade war between the US and China. There is no sign of this abating any time soon. Thus many businesses are planning to or are already in the process of re-siting their manufacturing facilities to other locations including India, Thailand and Vietnam (which is an ASEAN country).The SEC is developed with the vision of it becoming the gateway to South Asia. As part of this vision, the Port of Authority of Thailand(PAT) aims to make Ranong Port the logistics gateway between Thailand and India. The capacity of Ranong Port will be increased by six and a half times to reach a capacity of 500,000 TEUs per year by approximately 2022.

Items traded from India to Thailand

In 2019, India exported $4.39B to Thailand. The main products that India exported to Thailand are Diamonds ($653M), Combustion Engines ($401M), and Vehicle Parts ($173M). During the last 24 years the exports of India to Thailand have increased at an annualized rate of 8.6%, from $605M in 1995 to $4.39B in 2019.

Items traded from Thailand to India

In 2019, Thailand exported $7.06B to India. The main products that Thailand exported to India were Air Conditioners ($317M), Vehicle Parts ($295M), and Polyacetals ($282M). During the last 24 years, the exports of Thailand to India have increased at an annualized rate of 14.1%, from $297M in 1995 to $7.06B in 2019.

COMPARISON

In 2019,  India ranked 44 in the Economic Complexity Index (ECI 0.59), and 15 in total exports ($330B). That same year, Thailand ranked 31 in the Economic Complexity Index (ECI 1), and 23 in total exports ($249B).

Top Items exported from Thailand to India include

Items coming the other way from India To Thailand are

In 2019, the products from India that paid the highest import tariffs to enter Thailand were Food preparations (150%) and Grape wines, sparkling (150%).

The fast growing Indian market remains attractive for Thai investors, given the vast opportunities available in the infrastructure sector, tourism and retail industries. India continues to remain an interesting market for the export of goods from Thailand. Currently, Thai goods have benefited from tax reduction under ASEAN-India FTA in goods. For Thailand,  India is like a gateway to South Asia and beyond. As a result of the reduced tariff rates and new initiatives adopted by both countries, trade between the two countries increased manifold in recent years.

Major Indian Companies in Thailand include Tata group – Tata Motors (Thailand), Tata Steel Thailand and Tata Consultancy Services, The Aditya Birla Group, Mahindra Satyam, Ranbaxy, Dabur, Lupin, NIIT, Kirloskar Brothers Ltd, Punj Lloyd Group, Polyplex (Thailand) Public Co. Ltd, Precious Shipping PCL and Usha Siam Steel Industries PCL. It is known that companies like Jindal group [steel], Ashok Leylands [automobiles], Mahindras [automobiles], Escorts, D.R. Hotels (Nellore) Pvt. Ltd. and D.R. Utthama (Thailand) Co. Ltd., are also keen to expand their operations into Thailand.

Leading Thai companies in the fields of Agro-processing, construction, automotive, engineering and banking have an active and growing business presence in India

The two countries need to further expand their strategic, security, defence, and economic cooperation gave the geostrategic challenges as well as huge untapped potential. Both sides should invest the necessary energy, focus, and political capital in the relationship so that it can prosper rapidly to the advantage of the people of the two countries. Both Thai and Indian leaders are aware of the threats and impediments ahead and are determined to overcome them. They are also conscious of the huge existing opportunities and strengths and are resolute to harness them to mutual benefit and advantage.

The post Trade between India and Thailand appeared first on StartUp in Thailand.

Source: Asian Correspondent

Marketing Techniques to Watch for in Thailand

Thailand’s spending on internet media is projected to reach THB 27 Bn in 2022, accounting for 32 percent of total media spending, while the share of television spending is likely to decline below 50 per cent for the first time. Thailand’s 2022 media spending will outperform 2021, supported by the reopening and state stimulus schemes.

Innovations and technology have played a major part in Thailand’s recent economic growth. Businesses in most sectors in Thailand are facing immense challenges in adapting to the latest developments, which would continue to impact business across industries over the coming years. Companies would have to invest significantly in a variety of marketing technologies to stay afloat. Investment opportunities in Thailand for IT solutions providers and marketing firms are thus on the upswing.

Thai marketers are evolving constantly with the world around them. If 2021 was about recovering from an extraordinary shock, 2022 is all about responding, and thriving in the post-pandemic world. With so many advertising options and marketing channels out there, it could get overwhelming. Using every option might not be the best approach, rather making the most out of each option is the way to go. In this article, we will explore trends for helping marketers in Thailand.

Amplifying Customer Service with Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence in marketing uses both online as well as offline customer data together with concepts like machine learning, social intelligence and natural language processing to gauge the audiences’ future actions. This enables businesses to target the audiences with the appropriate message through the relevant marketing medium at the right time to turn the prospects into business opportunities.

Specific areas where businesses use AI and machine learning for solving marketing problems and improving processes include:

Brands are implementing and optimizing AI and machine learning within the customer experience for empowering and elevating customer service from cost centres to revenue drivers. Engineers and web developers aren’t the only ones employing AI and machine learning tools. Marketing consulting firms in Thailand, too, are increasingly utilizing these technologies in their marketing efforts.

Voice Search Optimization

A growing contingent of internet users are using voice assistants for web search. For adapting to this rising trend, more and more marketers are optimizing their content for voice search. For leveraging the increase in voice searches, content is being created that answers people’s questions.

For staying up-to-date with this marketing trend, marketers can try searching for the most asked questions around their industry through keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner. Lastly, most of the searches are done via mobile devices, marketers should ensure that their websites are mobile-friendly with fast loading speed to enhance their SEO ranking.

Voice search offers very profitable and interesting business opportunities in Thailand for businesses with a brick-and-mortar location or local presence, especially for those who are first movers and able to capitalize on this marketing trend.

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality

One of the marketing trends that won’t just be evident in the year 2022 but for coming years is Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality. We will begin to see these innovative technologies used for promoting products and services, forever transforming marketing.

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality are often also considered 360-degree marketing. Several real estate giants in Thailand have already started experimenting with virtual reality applications to allow potential customers experience their condominium units before they’re even constructed. More and more businesses in Thailand are experimenting with this type of marketing for improving the buyer’s awareness and increasing purchasing decisions.

Influencer marketing

2022 will be the year for the creators. Over the past year, the Thai influencer economy has grown considerably and is likely to continue to do so. In Thailand, influencer marketing spending has grown amid the pandemic, with 30% year-over-year growth to THB 2 Bn in 2020. During the outbreak:

Most of the Thai followers are buyers of influencer-endorsed products. As per a recent survey in Thailand, consumers noted that they mostly notice a new product when being endorsed by an influencer and at times are even convinced to purchase the said product.

Ways a business in Thailand can keep up with influencer marketing:

Inclusive marketing

An inclusive marketing strategy isn’t just about displaying diverse images on your social media pages or websites. Inclusive marketing isn’t a gimmick or a sales trick. A marketer must see how the world has shifted and recognized that being inclusive and respectful to local as well as foreign values is the new norm.

Consumers look for brands that practise what they preach and brands that are aligned with all values. If you’re starting a company in Thailand and looking for loyalty from your customers and lasting respect from them, you have to be an authentic brand. Let all groups or individuals recognize themselves in the marketing efforts of your brand and let them know that they can connect with your business. A truly inclusive brand walk the walk at each level. It means developing an inclusive culture and teams, building deep levels of customer intimacy with the various diverse customers that you serve.

Inclusive Marketing Tips for a Thai Business

The Role of Marketing Firms in Thailand

There are plenty of world-class marketing consulting firms in Thailand with the resources and expertise required to thrive in a competitive global market. And it’s isn’t just the Thai businesses that benefit from outsourcing to Thai marketing firms. Although the rates of Thai marketing agencies are comparatively lower than those in the western world, the quality of service is on par and even outdoes that of Western firms.

Marketing firms help you in identifying, reaching and connecting with your target audiences with the help of creative storytelling across digital platforms driving up your revenues and subsequently your profits.

Finally

It’s easy to get sidetracked by shiny innovative digital objects. Marketers adore new trends and want to stay at the leading edge of technologies. However, the truth is that most of the business growth still originates from foundational marketing tools. Don’t forget your foundation. Often, optimizing the base marketing execution would offer a better return on investment than experimenting with every new tool in the market.

As technology advances every second, a lot is changing quickly. Marketing is dynamic and quite volatile when it comes to changes. How to be on top of this?
The answer lies in adaptability. Keep up with the latest marketing trends and news. Comprehend what’s going to happen down the road and implement your marketing strategies towards it, and be fast!

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Source: Asian Correspondent