Kata Rocks
THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
The Phuket News Novosti Phuket Khao Phuket

Saha scales back as baht rises, consumer spending continues to fall

Saha scales back as baht rises, consumer spending continues to fall

BANGKOK: Consumer spending remains far from improved in the first half of the year as the gloomy export outlook weighs on economic growth.

economics
By Bangkok Post

Friday 28 June 2019, 09:07AM


Boonsithi Chokwatana, chairman of consumer goods conglomerate Saha Group, (left) leads Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak on a tour of the Saha Group Fair, which opened on Thursday and runs through Sunday at the Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Centre. Photo: Somchai Poomlard

Boonsithi Chokwatana, chairman of consumer goods conglomerate Saha Group, (left) leads Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak on a tour of the Saha Group Fair, which opened on Thursday and runs through Sunday at the Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Centre. Photo: Somchai Poomlard

Overall spending power has reached the most critical level in the past five years, said Boonsithi Chokwatana, chairman of consumer goods conglomerate Saha Group.

“Consumer spending in the past few months has been a source of concern because the export value of farm products fell sharply due to the strong baht,” Mr Boonsithi said on Thursday (June 27).

“The situation may get worse in the second half unless the government moves quickly to rein in the baht to 34 to the US dollar from an average of 31 now.”

Apart from agriculture, the textile sector has also felt the pinch of a strong baht.

Saha Group, which engages in all aspects of textiles from downstream to upstream, is heavily affected by the baht’s strength, Mr Boonsithi said, adding that the group has already scaled down its textile business.

The company has adjusted its fashion strategy by focusing on innovative garments to lure specific customer groups, expanding the business to organisation uniforms and increasing sales from e-commerce, he said.

According to Mr Boonsithi, the slow formation of the new government has also interrupted private investment, particularly from abroad.

“To curb further damage, the new government should rev up the formation of its Cabinet as soon as possible or within one month before the situation gets worse,” he said.

Moreover, the company will focus on expanding into promising market segments like education, logistics and services.

Mr Boonsithi said earlier this month that the group was delaying investment in consumer products and shifting focus to services, hotels and condominiums this year, citing political uncertainty as the key concern weighing on investment decisions.

He said the group had been set to splurge on a hefty investment budget this year and next, two to three times the outlay from 2018, had a government been formed a few weeks after the general election.

The group will start investing in the second half, but at a slower pace than last year and will instead place emphasis on the service sector.

Zest Real Estate

Saha Group will invest in five areas in the second half of this year: industrial estates; hotels and condominiums; international schools; smart grid; and distributing Kumamon, the rotund, red-cheeked bear from Japan.

The group is teaming up with Sojitz Corporation, one of the 10 largest trading companies in Japan, to develop new industrial estates next to the group’s own industrial estates in Kabin Buri, Prachin Buri; Lamphun; and Mae Sot, Tak province. Sojitz Corporation will also draw Japanese investors who have already invested in Vietnam and Indonesia to co-invest in the new industrial estate.

The group will also join with Tokyo Construction to co-develop a 200-unit condominium block and a 100-room four- or five-star hotel behind J Park community mall in Sri Racha, Chon Buri. The investments aim to cash in on the government's flagship Eastern Economic Corridor project.

The two investment projects are in the design process and are expected to start construction in the second half.

The company has also joined with a Thai partner to ask for the rights from King’s College School Wimbledon, England to build King's College International School on a 24-rai plot along Rama III Road this year.

Each project requires an investment of at least B3 billion.

In a related development, ICC International Plc, Saha Group’s marketing arm for fashion and beauty, on Thursday signed an agreement with ADK Emotions Inc to acquire the rights for Kumamon's master licensee in Thailand.

The company expects sales of Kumamon merchandise in Thailand to reach B40-60 million in 2020.

Vichai Kulsomphob, president of Saha Pathana Inter-Holding Public Co, the holding company under Saha Group, said it remains committed to continuing investment in the Thai market, with about 5 billion baht to be spent in various areas during 2019-20.

Saha Group expects total sales to grow by 3% from last year’s B300 billion.

 

Read original story here.

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

CAPTCHA

Be the first to comment.

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Running Empty: Water officials to splash B277mn on private sources as reservoirs fail to fill

A lot of water contract talks ( including 30% arrangements?). However, that will not grand Phuket wa...(Read More)


Running Empty: Water officials to splash B277mn on private sources as reservoirs fail to fill

Bang Wad water reservoir is ready for making it a beginners drive for golf players. The grass just n...(Read More)


PHUKET XTRA: VIDEO: Second Phuket water crisis? ’Peace walk’ monk returns! Dangerously sweet! || July 12

No, not a second water crisis. Phuket still remains in it's 'first' water crisis, as not...(Read More)


Surin Beach’s temporary lifeguards on hold until further notice

This article shows plainly that as long Cherng Talay Tambon Administration not gets a good Chief/May...(Read More)


After Phuket student killed by electrocution, officials assure public park areas are safe

The PEA always insist that the neutral wire be earthed at the breaker, that way any leakage will tri...(Read More)


Student killed by electrocution in Phuket public park under investigation

Always willing to do stuff after the incident, maintenance, doing stuff to prevent problems! Go roun...(Read More)


Student killed by electrocution in Phuket public park under investigation

As an electrician you only have to look at the state of power poles with bare wires, electric boxes ...(Read More)


Surin Beach’s temporary lifeguards on hold until further notice

Wow...shocking level of irresponsibility by the OrBorTor. How can this even happen? Actually, irre...(Read More)


Running Empty: Water officials to splash B277mn on private sources as reservoirs fail to fill

No wonder: over population, human greed, not match care about the environment, deforesting, cut down...(Read More)


Running Empty: Water officials to splash B277mn on private sources as reservoirs fail to fill

As Timy asked the question many times without getting any official answer,wouldn't it be about t...(Read More)