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Strategy

Growth

Efficient growth is key for business expansion and yielding sustainable returns to stakeholders. We aim to secure ThaiBev’s leadership position as the largest beverage company in Southeast Asia and generate sustainable returns for shareholders by developing innovative products, diversifying our portfolio, leveraging our efficient distribution network in core markets, and expanding our business in Southeast Asia. Through our collaboration with Fraser and Neave, Limited (“F&N”), Singapore’s leading beverage producer and distributor, as well as publisher, we are strengthening our foundation for sustainable growth in the future.

Diversity

Attaining business sustainability from diversified revenue streams is core to our plan. This involves increasing income contribution from our non-alcoholic beverage segment and overseas sales.

Our expansion into the non-alcoholic beverage market is an important part of our strategy to become the leading total beverage producer and distributor in the region. We focus on offering a more diversified product portfolio and optimizing our distribution network. ThaiBev’s expansion into the non-alcoholic beverage segment commenced in 2008 with the acquisition of Oishi Group Public Company Limited (“Oishi”) – the No. 1 green tea beverage producer in Thailand. Thereafter, we acquired Sermsuk Public Company Limited (“Sermsuk”) – the beverage producer with the most extensive distribution network in Thailand – in 2011; and F&N – a leading Singapore company in the beverage, publishing, and printing industries – in 2012.

In 2017, ThaiBev acquired a 75% stake in Myanmar Supply Chain and Marketing Services Co., Ltd. and Myanmar Distillery Co., Ltd., the biggest players in Myanmar’s whisky market. This acquisition highlighted Strategies the Company’s determination to engage in business in accordance with Vision 2020, working towards its goal of being the leader in Southeast Asia. ThaiBev also continued to expand its business in the food segment by acquiring assets from Yum Restaurants International (Thailand) Co., Ltd., the operator of KFC business, allowing it to operate 252 stores of KFC in Thailand. In addition, we acquired a 76% stake in Spice of Asia Co., Ltd. which operates several hotpot and Thai cuisine restaurants.

In our pursuit of overseas expansion, we view ASEAN countries as high-growth markets. Purchasing power in these markets, which have a total population of over 600 million people, is increasing amid the growth of their economies, and the rise in the number of tourists in the country. Beverages from Thailand have high growth potential in these markets. Consumer behaviour, especially in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, and Vietnam, has been strongly influenced by the popularity of Thai media broadcasts, singers, and superstars in these countries, as well as their substantial native labor force working in Thailand.

Furthermore, ThaiBev’s alliance with F&N has opened up many opportunities for joint investments in other countries. We have adapted successful business models from Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore for other countries while fostering further cooperation to optimize brand, distribution, sales and marketing synergies as well as support from domestic distributors. For instance, “Chang” beer managed to enter Vietnam in the past two years, while Oishi successfully penetrated the Myanmar market by collaborating with F&N’s branch offices in the country. Additionally, we leveraged Fraser and Neave Holding Berhad’s robust production facilities in Malaysia for our expansion into other halal markets in Southeast Asia.

Brand

In 2014, we re-organized ThaiBev’s management structure and streamlined our core businesses into three product groups – spirits, beer, and non-alcoholic beverage. We also identified the core products of each business, namely “Ruang Khao”, “Hong Thong”, “Blend 285”, “Chang” beer, “est” soft drinks, “Oishi” green tea, and “100PLUS”. Over the course of the past year, we continued improving our brand through product innovation and the introduction of more modern packaging in line with our premiumization strategy.

Our efforts in the spirits product group were focused on the development of “Ruang Khao”, the No. 1 brand in the white spirits category, through the launch of “Ruang Khao Silver” with a modern image and new packaging. This helped to upgrade the brand image of Ruang Khao, Thailand’s first spirits brand, in order to build a premium white spirits market and penetrate the Southeast Asian market.

We also revamped the packaging of “Blend 285” and “Blend 285 Signature”, products in the brown spirits segment, enhancing them with a glamorous image, mirroring that of premium international spirits, by featuring a capsule cap as the brand identity.

ThaiBev has extended its portfolio to the premium market by positioning its Scotch whiskies such as “Old Pulteney”, “anCnoc” and “Caorunn” gin in luxury hotels and restaurants in Thailand since 2015

The beer business group also had a satisfactory 2017 as “Chang” beer was awarded the “Thailand Country Winner” at the World Beer Award 2017, an international beer competition held annually over the last decade, in the category of Lager beer with Helles/Münchner production style. The award has strengthened its position as the country leader and a globally recognized Thai beer.

To further premiumize the brand image, “Chang” mineral water was launched in an emerald green bottle. The water is extracted from the aquifers in Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya province and processed through a 3-stage filtration system. It is subsequently certified by NSF International (“NSF”), an institute in USA which provides certification for food and water manufacturing process.

Beer business group also relaunched a new look of “Federbräu” as the first and only beer in Thailand which uses high quality single malt from a single source in Germany, with new packaging inspired by German Bauhaus-style art. As a testament to its outstanding quality, “Federbräu” won “Best German Style Pale Beer Award” during the World Beer Award 2017 competition and also won the “Design and Packaging” award during the International Beer Challenge 2017 competition.

To realize our potential and secure our market leadership in the non-alcoholic beverage segment, we constantly introduce innovative and healthy products that best cater to the tastes and preferences of consumers of all ages, suitable for all moments of daily life. New products launched in 2017 included Oishi “Yuzu Orange”, another line of ready-to-drink green tea with nata de coco, and Sermsuk’s “est PLAY Melon Bingsu” and “est PLAY Mango Bingsu”, which aimed to create a sensation in the carbonated soft drink market. Sermsuk also expanded the production base of “Crystal” drinking water, which has been certified by NSF, as a quality product with high standards. In addition, thinner plastic was used to produce the bottles for “Crystal” drinking water, and the packaging was also revamped to create a refreshing, modern look.

Reach

Our robust and extensive distribution network is one of our major strengths and is also a key factor that elevated ThaiBev to attain its leadership position in Thailand’s beverage market. We currently have more than 7,000 delivery trucks which reach over 400,000 outlets across the country, as well as long-standing relationships with agents, distributors, and restaurants. We have also established over 1,000 direct sales teams to provide sales services and manage the visibility of our products on store shelves. In 2013, we reinforced our domestic distribution network by establishing Modern Trade Management Co., Ltd. to distribute ThaiBev’s alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages to modern trade operators. In 2014, we founded HORECA Management Co., Ltd. to close gaps in our distribution channels to luxury hotels and restaurants and provide us with the benefits of complete coverage of the segment; and to introduce our overseas premium products to the upmarket on-premise segment in Thailand. In 2015, we established Cash Van Management Co., Ltd. to manage our direct sales teams, which support around 270,000 retailers across Thailand.

In 2017, we integrated innovations from the digital and automation space into the construction of the distribution center in Lampang province. ThaiBev also plans to expand into more areas through the establishment of other centers, providing complete coverage of the various channels. Through this strategic execution of plans, we are able to secure our position as a forerunner in integrated logistics management.

Besides enhancing ThaiBev’s own distribution network, we also always seek opportunities to collaborate with local business alliances in ASEAN markets in order to solidify our position as the leading full-scale beverage company in the region and become a truly stable and sustainable business.

Professionalism

One of the key aspects that drives the business towards Vison 2020 is people. ThaiBev is determined to continue building the team of each product group to have a variety of skill sets and collaborate efficiently so as to bring the most benefits to the operation and enhance the potential of the group in the long run.

ThaiBev has made every effort to place extensive focus on workforce development, through the expansion of knowledge and competencies, enabling our staff to flourish into more capable professionals. Many initiatives were established to cater to employees of every level to develop their potential. For instance, “Project Rocket” was launched with the aim of grooming talented employees that are 30 years of age or under, through a comprehensive learning and development process tailored for individuals. The program trains them to be ready to become executives by 2030.

Other projects include the “Management Development Program”, a collaboration with Sasin School of Management, which was organized for the third consecutive year to prepare mid-level executives for high-level positions. In addition, the “ThaiBev-NUS Global Executive Leaders Program”, a collaboration with NUS Business School, the business school of the National University of Singapore, which has consistently been ranked as the top institute in ASEAN. The program is designed for high-level executives to enhance their potential and prime them for international leadership. In 2017, we also embarked on the “ASEAN Management Development Program”, organized to equip mid-level executives with skills necessary for taking on leading positions in ASEAN, through the completion of projects and participation in field studies in neighbouring countries for the first time.

To ensure that ThaiBev continues to maintain relevancy and stay ahead in the digital age, the Office of Human Capital, together with the Office of Information Technology, have also developed the “Beverest” Project. The project encourages greater collaboration between the Company and its employees, as well as among employees from domestic and international businesses. These initiatives for our employees’ development are in line with the “Limitless Opportunities” that tie in with our Vision 2020, which calls for a workforce management strategy that aims to improve the staff’s competencies for career growth and create working networks.