Thai retail conglomerate, Central Group announced an investment of USD 200 million into Grab Holdings Inc. (Grab), South East Asia's leading ride-hailing platform, giving the Central Group a significant non-controlling stake in Grab’s Thai entity. Grab has diversfied into a number of areas, such as food delivery and parcel delivery and describes itself as an online-to-offline mobile platform. Central Group has the largest footprint of malls, hotels and merchants in Thailand. Initial areas of collaboration between the two will include:
This continues the trend of physical retailers partnering with online platforms. In December 2018, Japanese retail group, Aeon, which runs 1,300 shopping centers, general merchandise stores, and convenience stores across Southeast Asia, announced a partnership with Indonesian ride-hailing company Go-Jek on digital payment and home delivery.
(Sources: Grab Holdings Inc.; Phys)
American company Taco Bell will partner with Siam Taco Co Ltd to bring its Mexican-inspired cuisine to Thailand for the first time.
Early in 2019, Taco Bell will open its first Thailand location on the first floor of Mercuryville mall in central Bangkok. The upcoming Mercuryville Taco Bell will feature an urban-concept design that embodies the business and shopping community of the Chidlom area in Bangkok. Ideal for office workers and shoppers, the 60-seat restaurant will feature an open kitchen and modern design benches, making it an ideal spot to catch up with friends or take a break from shopping
Thai fans can look forward to a selection of Taco Bell’s famous Mexican-inspired food, including the Crunchwrap Supreme, Grilled Stuft Burrito and the trademark Crunchy Taco, as well as speciality items developed specifically for the Thai market.
(Sources: The Nation)
The Thai Ministry of Commerce has announced that it will launch a new application to connect traditional grocery stores directly with their suppliers by December. The application will allow bypassing middlemen, reducing costs, and increasing competitiveness of traditional grocery stores through e-commerce.
The ministry expects up to 100,000 traditional grocery stores to use the new application by the end of 2018.
The new application will also leverage the growing e-commerce industry in the Thai market to deliver products from suppliers to traditional grocery stores.
(Source: Thai Visa News)
JD Central, a leading online retailer from China, has officially launched a new online retail platform in Thailand. Similar to the Chinese platform, JD Central adopts a model combining self-run and third-party businesses and all consumer goods are 100 percent certified as authentic. JD Central is an e-commerce joint venture between two retail giants, Central Group, the biggest retail conglomerate in Thailand, and JD.com, the largest retailer in China.
Chief Executive Officer Vincent Yang revealed that the firm has a fully integrated logistics service and plans to increase the number of warehouses to support same-day delivery for about 25 million customers by 2019.
The company expects to leverage modern logistics technology for warehousing and delivery management. Autonomous Warehouse Robots will be introduced to replace manpower, substantially cut overheads and improve performance. The warehouse will also use Autonomous Delivery Vehicles and apply logistics innovation which can be integrated with Big Data and artificial intelligence technology.
(Sources: Xinhuanet; Yicai Global)
The operator of Tesco Lotus hypermarkets, Ek-chai Distribution System Co, is expanding its retail space by a total of 55,000 square metres this fiscal year, capitalizing on improved prospects in the retail business sector next year.
Just in 2018, the company opened 45 new Tesco stores, including six hypermarkets, one department store, one Talad and 37 Tesco Express outlets. The company is now planning to focus on second-tier cities.
Thailand is Tesco Group's largest international market outside the United Kingdom. It currently operates 2,000 outlets across the country. Chief executive Sompong Rungnirattisai said, in an interview with Bangkok Post: "We are committed to continuing to invest here. Thailand is an interesting country to invest because per capita income keeps rising along with increased urbanisation. These are both positive factors for our retail business."
(Source: Bangkok Post)
American fast food chain Burger King is preparing to open 16 new stores by the end of 2018 in Thailand. Burger King Thailand’s General Manager revealed that the company also plans to open 15 stores annually in 2019 and 2020, taking the network to a total of 131 stores. The new outlets will be opened near tourist spots and petrol stations, where higher than average spending is considered likely.
“Customers at petrol stations spend one-and-a-half-times more than at original stores,” said Burger King Thailand’s General Manager, “because we can stay open from breakfast until late at night, and not only at lunch and dinner time as is the case with retail complexes.”
The investment necessary for the company’s expansion in 2018 is estimated to be around USD 11 million.
(Source: Retail News Asia)
Thai Union has entered into an agreement to acquire a stake in Thammachart Seafood Retail Co., Ltd., (TSR) which provides professional management services to Thai retailers for their seafood counters. Thai Union will aquire a 25.1 per cent stake in TSR for approximately THB 37 million.
TSR, which currently generates sales in excess of THB 660 million, was incorporated in 2007 and provides professional management services to Thai retailers for their seafood counters, handling fresh and frozen product at 158 locations in Thailand. This includes two food and beverage concepts at eight locations, The Dock Seafood Bar and The Lobster Lab, as well as management of the Ocean Bar.
The deal is expected to be completed by the end of July 2018.
Julian G. Davies, TSR’s CEO, and Yeeran G. Davies, TSR’s co-founder, will initially remain majority owners and retain operational control. Through options, Thai Union expects to increase its shareholding to 65 percent in 2019.
Thai Union, owner of Thai-leading brands such as SEALECT, Fisho and Qfresh, will be able to leverage TSR’s creative seafood restaurant concepts such as the Dock and kiosk-style concepts such as the Lobster Lab, as well as potentially supply its products to TSR, including its retail segment.
“Thai Union invested in TSR in order to build on its strong retail platform throughout Thailand, particularly in chilled and smoked seafood products associated with Thammachart,” Julian G. Davies said
(Source: Thai Union)
Central Pattana (CPN), Thailand’s largest shopping mall developer, announced that it will spend THB 5 billion (USD 156 million) to develop Thailand’s first international luxury outlet mall called Central Village, near Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport. The mall will be a 10 minute drive from Suvarnabhumi and a 45 minute drive from central Bangkok
The outlet will occupy 160,000 sqm and will have a total retail space of 40,000 sqm, including a 200-room hotel to be operated by an international chain. It is scheduled to open in the third quarter of 2019.
The luxury outlet mall will host more than 235 retail boutiques of international and local brands selling branded goods at a discount of 35 to 70 per cent to normal prices. The mall will primarily target Chinese and Russian customers. Tourists are expected to account for around 35 per cent of total projected customer traffic of 6 million.
CPN operates 32 shopping malls under various brands, including CentralPlaza (24 malls), CentralFestival (six malls), CentralWorld (one mall), and CentralMarina (one mall). and it has benefited from the country’s tourism boom, on the back of increasing Chinese arrivals, supported by more direct flights from China and a visa fee discount. It reported a net profit of 13.6 billion baht (USD 432.3 million) for its 2017 fiscal year an increase of 47 per cent from the previous year.
The plan for this new outlet mall is in line with the company’s plan to open 2-3 new malls each year. Its planned capital expenditure is 15-22 billion baht (USD 470-685 million) per annum. In 2018, the company plans to open two new malls, including CentralFestival Phuket phase 2 in 2Q18 and Central i-City in Malaysia in 4Q18.
(Sources: The Nation, Chiang Rai Times, DBS Research)
L’Oréal Thailand aims to become the number one beauty company in Thailand, according to a report published by The Nation. The company revealed that it has outperformed the market for the sixth consecutive year and unveiled its strategy for 2018.
The company revealed that it will usher in two important additions to its Thai portfolio: Giorgio Armani beauty and derma skin care line CeraVe. The French company also plans to accelerate its digital presence, having signed up to new e-tailers Konvy and Orami as well as social commerce in [email protected] and Craze and the launch of dedicated e-boutiques for Lancôme, YSL Beauté and Biotherm.
The Thai beauty market grew 7.8% in 2017 and is one of the largest in the ASEAN region. Skin care is the largest category overall, although make-up is enjoying buoyant growth. L’Oréal Thailand continues to be the leading facial skin care brand nationwide.
(Sources: Global Cosmetics News; CosmeticDesign-Asia)
Central Pattana Pcl (CPN), one of the largest Thai retail property developers, has reported net profit of USD 432.3 million for its 2017 fiscal year, up 47% from a year earlier.
The success of the company, which operates 32 shopping malls in Thailand, can be explained by the boom in tourism, led by Chinese arrivals. CPN attributed this increase to a visa fee discount and waiver incentives, as well as more direct flights from China. In 2017, Thailand hosted 35 million tourists, and it is estimated that this number will rise to 37.5 million in 2018.
CPN plans a new mall on the tourist island of Phuket to open by mid-year, and another mall in Malaysia to open by year-end. By 2022, the group aims to operate over 7,500 stores in Thailand, from the current 4,970 and add more than 500 stores to reach around 750 stores in Vietnam in the same period.
Fast Retailing Co, Japan's leading casual wear chain operator, will open its first roadside Uniqlo store in Thailand in March 2018. This marks a milestone in its store expansion in the region with the introduction of a business model that has been a mainstay in Japan.
Thailand will be the fourth market in which the clothing giant has opened a roadside Uniqlo shop, after Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. Operating roadside shops is a core domestic strategy for the Yamaguchi-based firm. The popular Japanese brand has opened 35 stores in Thailand since its 2011 debut in the country, with stores there boasting the highest sales among shops across the region.
(Source: The Japan Times)
Global coffeehouse chain Starbucks Coffee has announced the opening of its three-storey 430 sqm. flagship store in Thailand. The new store will be located at Siam Square, a prime location in the city of Bangkok.
The Thai coffee market is evolving at a rapid pace, with younger people becoming discerning coffee drinkers. Starbucks plans to increase its outlets in Thailand from 321 now to 400 by 2019. Thailand is one of the fastest-growing markets for Starbucks in terms on new store openings, alongside Indonesia. Thailand will also become the model for Starbucks in exploring opportunities in other emerging markets in South East Asia such as Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam.
(Source: The Nation)
Safilo continues to expand internationally, boosting its presence in Asia. The Italian eyewear manufacturer Safilio is strengthening its presence in Asia, and has recently agreed to an exclusive distribution agreement for Thailand and Cambodia. Currently, the company counts on a international distribution network that includes 42 countries. The distributing company is Supreme Eyewear, which will sell all of the more than 30 brands featured in Safilo's portfolio, from the most accessible ones, like Polaroid and Havaianas, to premium products such as Elie Saab, Dior, Fendi, Jimmy Choo, Givenchy and soon also Moschino. Supreme Eyewear is a major Thai distributor with a 40-year presence in the eyewear business.
The company's distribution agreement for Thailand and Cambodia marks a further step in its development of the Asia Pacific region. It supports the acceleration in the growth of Safilo's Emerging Markets unit, as per Safilo’s 2020 Strategy.
Israel's Frutarom, one of the world's 10 largest companies in the field of flavors and natural specialty fine ingredients, has signed an agreement to acquire 60% of Thai flavors company, Mighty, for THB 393 million (USD 11.9 million). The company will initially acquire 49% stake in Mighty and after meeting a number of conditions and receiving regulatory approvals in Thailand, it will raise its holdings to 60%. Frutarom plans to transform Mighty into a center for R&D and production for the countries of the entire region, as well as to accelerate Mighty’s activity in the field of sweet flavors. Mighty is Frutarom’s second acquisition this year in South East Asia, after having acquired the Vietnamese flavors producer WFF, and is part of the fulfillment of Frutarom’s strategy to significantly expand its activity in Asia.
Mighty, which was founded in 1989, engages in the development, production and marketing of flavors, including savory taste solutions (the non-sweet spectrum of flavors). The company has a leading position in Thailand’s flavors market where there are very few producers of taste solutions, and is among the most innovative flavors companies in South East Asia based on independent R&D. In recent years Mighty has won a number of prizes as an innovative and leading flavors manufacturer in South East Asia. The company’s broad portfolio of solutions includes flavors, seasoning blends and marinades as well as specialty functional raw materials for the food and beverage industry with emphasis on the field of convenience foods, snacks, noodles, fish, meats, baked goods, beverages and dairy, and it has a portfolio of unique products and solutions adapted to Asian tastes based on the vast knowledge and experience of its managers. Mighty’s activity also includes unique solutions for producing raw materials for the fields of infant nutrition and elderly nutrition, and Frutarom intends to continue developing this activity in Thailand and in the countries of the region.
Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA), the owner of Boots health and beauty chains has outlined its plans to expand its business in Asia, which is being driven by an fast expanding middle class. The company has identified Thailand as a core target market, where it has had a strong presence for the past 20 years. Presently, there are 277 Boots stores in Thailand. Boots is a unique business which blends pharmacy, retail, and wholesale at a single location, hence, it is able to compete in a tough retail market in Thailand. In addition, Thailand’s aging society is leading to a rising demand for healthcare products and services, which will help to stimulate growth opportunities for Boots. The company’s objective now is to invest in innovation to increase the number of Boots-owned brands, which currently include No7, Soap & Glory, Seventeen, and Botanics.
By 2030, two-thirds of the global middle class will be residents of the Asia-Pacific region, according to EY’s Hitting The Sweet Spot report. The rapid emergence of Asia’s middle class will bring far-reaching economic change, creating new market opportunities for companies operating in the FMCG sector. As purchasing power grows, there will also be a strong demand for luxury goods and technological products. Thailand is already seeing a strong demand in these sectors, having made remarkable progress in social and economic development over the last four decades, and moving from a low-income country to an upper-income country in less than a generation.
(Sources: World Bank; HuffPost; EY; Bangkok Post)
The sales growth of fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) in the first half of 2017 is the lowest in the past decade, growing by only 1% according to market research company Kantar Worldpanel Thailand. The causes of the sluggish growth this year is due to slow economic recovery, weak commodity prices and lower farm income affected by last year’s drought crisis.
The three major product categories that face a significant drop in sales growth in the first half of 2017 include household goods, personal care and food and drinks. On the other hand, sales of some ingredients and raw materials such as rice and coconut milk expanded, which may suggest that people have started to cook at home more and eat out less.
However, the research also stated that Thai consumers are increasingly doing their shopping at hypermarkets, convenience stores, and online channels, instead of the traditional trade channels. Online shopping, despite being a small player as a sales channel, is growing and has the potential to be a future growth driver.
(Sources: Kantar Worldpanel Thailand; Bangkok Post)
TCP Group, the Thai owner, manufacturer, and distributor of Red Bull, Ready, Sponsor, Som Plus, Mansome, and Puriku beverages as well as Sun Snack snacks, today, announced that it has launched a massive, five-year organisational transformation programme aimed at making the group into one of Thailand's most admired enterprises and tripling annual sales to US$ 3 billion. It plans to invest US$300 million as part of a five-year programme to strengthen the core areas of its business, particularly the sectors of company and staff management, manufacturing capacity enhancement and expansion, research and development programs, as well as local and international market presence.
TCP Group is a leading canned beverage producer, with over one billion liters of total production capacity annually. It has active manufacturing plants in Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, and China. The group is comprised of T.C. Pharmaceutical Industries Co., Ltd., which is the primary manufacturer of group products, The Red Bull Beverage Co., Ltd., which handles marketing and sales of group products, T.G. Vending and Showcase Industries Co., Ltd., which owns and operates vending machines for group and other products, and Durbell Co., Ltd., which distributes group products as well as other brands. Consolidated TCP Group sales is forecast to reach US$ 900 million for the full year ending 31 December 2017, with around US$ 600 million in exports.
(Source: TCP Group)
To attract Chinese holiday shoppers in Thailand, TripAdvisor China has partnered with five Thai retail groups to enhance their shopping experience in Bangkok. Thailand is one of the most popular destinations for Chinese tourists with 8.7 million Chinese tourists in 2016 and the number is expected to increase this year. In addition, 27% of the country’s tourist revenue came from Chinese tourist spending which makes China Thailand’s largest tourist source market.
The retail partnership between TripAdvisor and the five retailers is expected to further boost spending by Chinese visitors by providing discounts and promotions, access floor maps, brand directories, recommendations and curated shopping guides via mobile web or app. The five Thai retailers include the Central Group, King Power, Siam Piwat Group, Terminal 21 and The Mall Group.
(Sources: Chiangrai Times, Inside Retail)
Line Man, an on-demand delivery service which was launched in May 2016 is significantly growing with 500,000 users in Thailand thanks to an increasing popularity of Online-to-Offline (O2O) commerce. Line Thailand’s objective is to double the growth over the next year.
The managing director of Line Thailand believes there is large potential in this sector as there are over 44 million people in Thailand which is equivalent to about 70% of the total population who use smartphones. Nonetheless, most of the retail and restaurant industries still only exist in the offline world. The proportion of online food delivery services compared to the entire restaurant industry is only 4.9% while the proportion of the e-commerce market is3.8% of the total retail industry.
Line Man provides 24 hours daily services in the areas of food delivery, messenger, convenience goods and postal. The users have been increasing by over 10% every month.
(Sources: Bangkok Post, The Nation)
Sales at big retailers and chain-store operators increased 3.02% in the first quarter of 2017 as the economy is recovering and the business data is looking positive this year. However, the Thai Retailers Association (TRA) is still being cautious, citing weak consumer spending had not recovered. Furthermore, it mentioned that if the key support for the growth of this sector, government stimulus, were to be tapered off, sales growth at the big retailers could easily fall below 3% for the first half of the year. Conversely, efficient government expenditure could raise sales to 3.2%.
Out of the total retail spending in Thailand, 32% comes from the modern retail segment sales namely department stores, big supermarkets and chain-store operations. Additionally, the sales growth that is observed at the leading listed retailers are mainly driven by store expansion, while same store growth is limited.
(Sources: The Nation, Destination Thailand News)
The Thai retail industry is transforming in many ways with certain sectors outperforming others. The health and beauty retail market grew 8.5% last year, supermarkets by 7.5% and both department stores and convenience stores by 3.5%.
An interesting trend now is a blurring of segments. Thailand has shoe shops selling coffee (My Shoe Cafe), coffee shops selling music, supermarkets selling loans alongside food, and department stores selling fashion and insurance.
At the same time, there is a move from segmentation to fragmentation: the convenience sector is splitting into convenience-food retailing, convenient health and beauty, and “super-convenience”, which are larger format stores, often trading around the clock, like Aeon’s MaxValu and Mini Big C.
Online shopping is gaining momentum, and the Thai Retail Association is predicting growth of between 15 and 20% over the next few years. Online accounted for about THB 1 trillion (USD 29.28 billion) in sales last year, compared with brick-and-mortar’s THB 3.4 trillion (USD 99.56 billion)
(Sources: Retail News Asia, The Malaysian Shopper)
DHL eCommerce, a division of the world’s leading logistics company, Deutsche Post DHL Group, is bringing in the capital of EUR 3.6 billion between now and 2020 to support the rising Thai e-commerce market. The plan is to enhance its nationwide coverage with next day delivery in remote areas and extending pick-up service to small e-commerce merchants to meet its growing customer demands. There are 2.7 million SMEs in Thailand so it means greater business opportunity.
Thailand’s e-commerce market is currently the second largest in South East Asia and it is expected to grow 22% per annum until 2020. Along with this growth, the demands for cost-effective and quality logistics solutions to meet rising consumer needs are also growing.
In the past year, DHL eCommerce Thailand has invested significantly in people, service, facilities, vehicles and coverage. With 3,222 sqm central hub located in Bangkok and its domestic delivery network across the nation, DHL eCommerce has the capacity to deal over 15 million shipments every year. For merchants, it offers access to Cash on Delivery (COD) with daily remittance as well as access to a multilingual call center and simple IT integration of online orders to allow shippers to easily prepare orders for delivery into the DHL network. More importantly, DHL eCommerce could help Thai businesses to expand internationally and tap on the massive international e-commerce market through its range of affordable international cross-border shipping products and scalable, per-per-use fulfilment solutions.
(Sources: Retail News Asia, DHL)
Thailand is experiencing a boom of shopping mall openings in 2017. International fashion brands and retailers hope to take advantage of the evident mall culture in the South East Asian Market. A new research report conducted by Nomura, Japanese bank and consulting group shows that Thailand and South East Asia as a whole is facing rapid growth in retail sector and increased store openings and it is expected that this will continue over the next 12 months. The supply of retail space in Bangkok is growing at 6% annually from 2007 to 2015.
The report also stated that the current trend of online shopping is not a threat to bricks and mortar store to South East Asian country as consumers in these markets have embraced a mall culture. Though e-commerce is on an upward trend in Thailand, It is unlikely that it will takeover malls because the malls are very well developed in Bangkok and are usually conveniently located.
For Thai people, shopping malls are considered a place for socializing and taking care of personal lifestyle needs as Thailand is hot all year round which pushes the demand for air conditioning and the lack of nature parks.
(Sources: Retail News Asia, Nomura)
SF Development, the developer of Megabangna shopping mall has a long term plan to complete its THB 67 billion (USD 1.9 billion) mixed-use Megacity project in Bangkok’s Bangna area over the next 14 years. Out of THB 67 billion, THB 2 billion (USD 59.44 million) is to be spent on developing retail phase at its Megabangna shopping complex by the end of 2017. It is to add another 40,000 sqm of retail space to the existing 200,000 sqm. The managing director, Christian Olofsson expects that this retail extension will increase visitation by 10% each month.
10,000 sqm of the additional space will cater 40 restaurants and cafes such as Bon Chon, Dean & DeLuca and Starbucks. There will also be a Tops Food & Wine supermarket and parking for 1,200 cars. The construction has started and it is scheduled to be open in December.
Apart from retail spaces, there will be hotels, office buildings, residential and other mixed-use components to the Megacity project.
(Sources: The Nation, Bangkok Post)
A new partnership has been announced between Spar International and Bangchak Retail Company (BCR) to open 300 Spar stores in Thailand by 2020 with a total investment of EUR 74 million. SPAR International is the world’s largest food retail voluntary chain with over 12,100 stores worldwide and global retail sales of EUR 33 billion in 2015. Its expansion into Asian markets is growing with the brand attracting independent partners.
In 2016, 7 stores were open, consisting of key flagship convenience and neighbourhood developments and the plan is to open 50-80 stores each year from 2017. During this process, it is estimated that 2,500 jobs will be created. BCR’s retail strategy meets customer needs, with strong market growth in the neighbourhood grocery sector in Thailand; the company anticipates retail sales of EUR 245 million by 2020.
Tobias Wasmut, managing director of Spar International stated at the official announcement of the new partnership that this brings together their internationally tried and tested retail expertise particularly in convenience and supermarket stores with the extensive knowledge of the Thai market. Their focus is to source produce and product locally with Spar International working on developing its own brand of products.
(Sources: SPAR International, The Retail Bulletin)
Siam Makro, Thai listed wholesaler has entered agreements, through its subsidiary Siam Food Services, is to acquire 4 food businesses in Asia and the United Arab Emirates for over THB 3 billion (USD 86 million). It will be buying 80% in each of these targeted companies namely Indoguna (Singapore) Pte Ltd, Indoguna Dubai LLC and 2 Hong Kong-based firms Lordly Company Limited and Just Meat Company Limited.
The company expected that these transactions will help Siam Food to expanding its business regards to providing food services solutions to premium food supplies in Singapore, the United Arab Emitrates and Hong Kong and in accelerating an expansion of the business to ASEAN countries. To further emphasize its expansion in Asia, Siam Makro has set up a USD 2 million joint venture in Cambodia, registered as Makro Cambodia Limited in September 2016, in which it holds 70% equity.
(Sources: Retail News Asia, Deal Street Asia)
Central FamilyMart announced its plan to double the number of its convenience stores in Thailand in the next 5 years from 1,116 to over 2,000 stores. According to the president, Chiranun Poopat, the company will be expanding constantly in order to meet the demand of a growing market and to increase access to consumers in specific locations. This expansion will be financed via capital investment and franchising.
The locations of focus include Bangkok and the surrounding areas as well as cities and destinations visited by foreign tourists. The company plans to add over 60 stores this year and it will also improve its existing outlets.
(Sources: Fruitnet, Asia Corp)
ThaiBev subsidiary, Food of Asia, has formed a partnership with Hong Kong-based Maxim’s group to launch the MX Cakes & Bakery concept in Thailand. It plans to open up to 100 stores across the country and its first store has opened at Siam Paragon.
Though Maxim’s group does have extensive experience in the international market, operating the Starbucks businesses in Vietnam and Cambodia, this it its first time operating its own brand outside of Hong Kong.
MX’s bakery lines target busy professionals who want to eat on the go. In the past several years, Thailand’s bakery sector has grown at 7% annually. The managing director of Food of Asia stated at the Siam Paragon store opening ceremony that the plan is to open 80 t0 100 MX Cakes & Bakery outlets in Thailand by 2020 via different retail formats, which are conventional shops, on-the-go and kiosk outlets. They will be located in various places such as shopping malls and office buildings.
(Sources: Insider Retail Thailand, The Nation)
Central Pattana (CPN) has set THB 60 billion (USD 1.78 billion) to develop shopping complexes between this year and 2018 in 5 local and foreign locations including Mahachai in Samut Sakhon and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, its first project abroad.
Its number of shopping malls will increase from 30 to 34 as a result of this 3-year plan and its retail space will also rise from 6.7 million square meters to approximately 8 million. 3 out of 5 new local shopping malls will be Central Plazas located in Nakhon Si Thammarat, one will be in Nakhon Ratchasima set to open in September next year and another one will be in Mahachai opening in the 3rd quarter next year.
Central i-City complex in Kuala Lumpur valued at THB 8.5 billion (USD 252.62 million) is scheduled to open in 2018. This is a joint venture project with I-Berhad, a real estate developer in Malaysia.
In addition, the company sets THB13.2 billion (USD 392.31 million) out of its capital expenditure budget to renovate its existing 5 malls including Central Plaza Pinklao, Central Plaza Bangna, Central Plaza Pattaya, Central Plaza Rama 3 and Central World.
(Sources: Thailand Construction News, The Nation)
Thanks to the rise in the number of mobile internet users and aggressive discount pricing among e-commerce companies, Thailand is facing a potential growth of 30% this year in online retail market, according to Surangkana Wayuparb, president of the Electronic Transactions Development Agency (ETDA).
The overall e-commerce market of the country including B2C, B2B and business-to-government (B2G) was estimated to be worth THB 2.2-2.3 trillion (USD 65 - 68 billion) in 2015. The value of local e-commerce market in 2014 was THB 2.03 trillion which was increased by 5% from 2013. Surangkana asserts that the main drivers of local online retail market growth are the country’s large mobile subscriber base of 102 million as well as the competition in the e-commerce market.
It is encouraged by the ETDA that small and medium-sized enterprises market their businesses online as part of the government’s efforts to promote creativity, innovation and the use of applications under a new business model coinciding with the Thailand 4.0 project. Additionally the ETDA has announced its plan to launch an online directory offering access to online retailers.
(Sources: Bangkok Post, ETDA)