Thailand's Services & Retail sector Lags Their ASEAN Counterparts in Planning for a Digital Future

AIBP this year will discuss the progress of enterprise digitalization in Thailand

Bangkok, Thailand, 12th June 2019 – A recent survey, conducted by Asia IoT Business Platform (AIBP) of 1,624 Business & Information Technology professionals throughout Southeast Asia revealed that businesses in this part of the world are increasingly adopting digital technology to remain competitive. Only 8.4% of respondents believe that Digital Transformation is not present in their organisation, while 79.8% agree that their organisation is connected and uses automation, advanced data analytics and other digital tools for process/operational improvement.

However, the adoption of digital technology varies across industries in Thailand. For example, 80.3% of local respondents within the manufacturing industry believe that their organisations use digital tools effectively whereas only 68.2% of respondents within the Retail industry feel the same. In comparison, retailers in the rest of Southeast Asia are amongst the first movers when it comes to implementing digital technology.

“The manufacturing sector will continue to contribute to a large proportion of Thailand’s economy and labour market. The survey shows that local businesses in this sector are fairly competitive when it comes to adopting digital technology to enhance their operations. However, businesses within the services sector in Thailand seem to be slower than their peers in the rest of the Southeast Asian region in going digital, which could hamper their competitiveness and overall growth in Thailand’s economy.” said Irza Suprapto, CEO of Asia IoT Business Platform.

However, there are many things to be positive about as Thailand’s population is one of the most advanced in Southeast Asia, ranking second only to Singapore in terms of access to, and speed of, internet. The AIBP ASEAN Enterprise Digital Transformation Survey also revealed that 74% of business leaders in Thailand are content with connectivity options, compared to 48.6% in the Philippines, where connectivity infrastructure is still an issue.

Also, the local winners of the AIBP ASEAN Enterprise Innovation Awards in 2018 were Krungsri and Ananda Development, both businesses which are involved in the services segment of the economy. Both companies exemplified how big data analytics and artificial intelligence are used to impact business operations as part of their overall digital transformation journeys.

Thailand has made both soft and hard infrastructure investments to ensure the country is ready for the new digital era. At the last AIBP, Ms. Ajarin Pattanapanchai, Permanent Secretary of MDES shared that Thailand has focused on setting up a digital foundation in industries as its short-term goal, and is looking to promote digital inclusion at a national level and provide equal opportunity for Thai citizens as part of its 20-year development policy.

Government agencies, like Digital Economy Promotion Agency (depa) have also launched several initiatives to help smaller firms take the leap in adopting digital strategies, such as:

  1. Mini-transformation vouchers for firms to purchase technology products or services from depa-registered solution providers
  2. The formation of a digital Infrastructure Fund to support firms and government agencies with their digital infrastructure development.
  3. Courses including Digital CEO, Digital Community Boot Camp, UPSKILL SME have been conducted on a regular basis to educate firms in devising digital strategies

“One of our missions is to promote and support local enterprises in their industries and to help them develop new innovations. Over the past year working with AIBP, we have seen local Thai enterprises given the opportunity to share their current projects and challenges, and expose themselves to digitalization strategies of international players via trade missions and workshops in overseas markets within ASEAN. This is a good opportunity for us to understand how to help businesses more effectively in their digital adoption, and at the same time facilitate technology exchange with international partners,” said Dr Supakorn Siddhichai , Executive Vice President of depa.

About Asia IoT Business Platform

With a focus on local telecommunication companies and verticals, the Asia IoT Business Platform is an educational platform crafted by the industry, for the industry, with the aim of addressing key issues facing the adoption of IoT technologies in the ASEAN region. The program drives enterprises to understand and learn about the adoption of Digital Technologies for their business. Since its inception in 2013, the Asia IoT Business Platform has secured strong support from local governments, enterprises and telecommunication companies.

The  31st edition of Asia IoT Business Platform (AIBP) will be held in Bangkok on 31st July and 1st August at the InterContinental Bangkok, Thailand. The event is being held in Thailand’s capital for the 5th consecutive year and will focus on the theme of Driving Digitalization Ecosystems in Thailand.

Endorsed by Thailand’s Ministry of Digital Economy and Society (MDES), co-hosted by the Digital Economy Promotion Agency (depa), the event will focus on Thailand 4.0 initiatives and shed light on the ongoing Internet of Things (IoT) projects and initiatives that local enterprises and public service organizations are embarking, as well as the latest developments in Thailand’s smart city projects under the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC).

About Industry Platform Pte Ltd

Industry Platform Pte. Ltd. is a Singapore incorporated firm focused on the global telecommunications sector. We are Southeast Asia’s leading organizer of Machine-to-Machine (M2M) and Internet of Things (IoT) conferences and exhibitions. We work with local and global businesses, as well as public sector bodies and associations who are looking to expand their reach in Asian markets. We provide the best platforms for industry professionals to network and shape developments.

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