Minibikes: Thai brand to be made in Laos

Stallions, the Thai minibike brand, is planning a factory in Laos & exports to Myanmar, Cambodia and Vietnam.





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VEHICLES

Stallions to develop minibike factory in Laos

24/07/2012
Nanchanok Wongsamuth

Stallions, the Thai minibike brand, will open a factory in Laos next year to serve as a production base for exports to other Asean countries.

Jaroen Laplonluelay, the chairman of Power Stallions Co, said his company is now studying the legal issues of setting up a factory in Laos but plans annual production capacity of 10,000 units.

Next year it plans to export to Myanmar, Cambodia and Vietnam, with shipments representing 30% of sales.

Stallions is also building a 150-million-baht factory in Rayong's Amata City Industrial Estate, scheduled to be completed next February and with annual production capacity of 15,000 units.

The minibikes are currently produced by a factory owned by Tiger, another Thai motorcycle brand, in Samut Prakan province.

Tiger has a contract to build 500 to 1,000 units a month, but there are capacity constraints since Tiger also produces its motorcycles there.

Stallions started by launching three models at the 2010 Bangkok International Motor Show in 2010 - the Momo, Solo and Gio, all with 125-cc, four-stroke engines.

A total of 2,600 units were sold in 2010 and 5,200 units last year.

Stallions expects sales of 10,000 units this year after first-half sales reached 6,319 units.

This year, Stallions will expand its sales network nationwide, with a goal of 90 branches, up from 46.

Kittipong Aroonpiroj, the managing director of Motor World Import-Export Co, Stallions' dealer in Laos, said he expects sales of the brand, to start next month, will total 400-500 units this year and 1,500 to 2,000 next year.

Mr Jaroen is more optimistic, expecting 600-800 units to be sold this year.

Motor World Import-Export will this year open 11 more branches nationwide in Laos on top of its existing three in Vientiane to support its growth.

"We believe we'll be the leader in niche motorcycles in the Lao market soon," said Mr Kittipong.

Lao incomes are rising due to the opening up of the country and the increasing variety of businesses. As well, motorcycles are widely used in Laos.

He said Thai households have a preference for cars, but in Laos the emphasis tends to be on motorcycles.

Stallions are unique and can also be modified and painted.

High-end restaurants have also expressed interest in using the motorcycles for decoration or props, thus spurring interest in his company's products, said Mr Kittipong.
 
He said Chinese motorcycles are prevalent in Laos, but these are prone to damage and are priced at 10,000 to 25,000 baht.

Those from South Korea have been gaining in popularity with a price range of 25,000 to 35,000 baht, while Thai brands are considered top-grade and priced from 44,400 to 80,000 baht.

(Source: Bangkok Post, VEHICLES, Stallions to develop minibike factory in Laos, 24/07/2012, Nanchanok Wongsamuth, link


Minibike Vocabulary

minibike - a very small motorcycle (See Wikipedia)

Stallions - a brand of minibike produced in Thailand
Power Stallions Co - the company that produces the Stallion minibike (See website)

Stallions to develop minibike factory in Laos

brand - a type of product made by a particular company ตรา, ยี่ห้อ

base - a place from where an activity can be planned and operated ฐานที่มั่น
production base - the place where many factories are operated by a company

issues - subjects that need to be considered ประเด็น
legal issues

production capacity - the amount of something that can be produced ความสามารถในการ (ผลิต)
annual - happening once a year ประจำปี
annual production capacity - the greatest amount that can be produced in one year

Stallions, the Thai minibike brand, will open a factory in Laos next year to serve as a production base for exports to other Asean countries. Jaroen Laplonluelay, the chairman of Power Stallions Co, said his company is now studying the legal issues of setting up a factory in Laos but plans annual production capacity of 10,000 units. Next year it plans to export to Myanmar, Cambodia and Vietnam, with shipments representing 30% of sales.

scheduled - planned to happen at a particular time or day ตามตารางเวลา
scheduled to be completed - the time they are planning to finish the project or activity

Stallions is also building a 150-million-baht factory in Rayong's Amata City Industrial Estate, scheduled to be completed next February and with annual production capacity of 15,000 units. The minibikes are currently produced by a factory owned by Tiger, another Thai motorcycle brand, in Samut Prakan province.

contract - a written (or oral) agreement that is legally binding สัญญา

constraints
- things that limit possible action and solutions to problems
capacity - Same as "production capacity"
capacity constraints

Tiger has a contract to build 500 to 1,000 units a month, but there are capacity constraints since Tiger also produces its motorcycles there.

models - different designs or types of a product

launching - beginning or starting something new
launching a model -  beginning or starting to sell a model of a product  

125-cc, four-stroke
engines - a small motorcycle engine (See Wikipedia)

Stallions started by launching three models at the 2010 Bangkok International Motor Show in 2010 - the Momo, Solo and Gio, all with 125-cc, four-stroke engines. A total of 2,600 units were sold in 2010 and 5,200 units last year.Stallion expects sales of 10,000 units this year after first-half sales reached 6,319 units.

network - a large system of connected parts, organisations, people, etc. เครือข่าย

sales network - the part of a company that sells its products over a region or the whole country (with sales people and offices located at many different places in the region or country)

expand - to become larger ขายตัวออกไป
nationwide - throughout a whole country ทั่วทั้งประเทศ
expand nationwide

expand its sales network nationwide

branches -
offices in different places

optimistic
- feel that the future will be good; expecting good things to happen or to be successful in the future โดยคาดหวังสิ่งที่ดี, มองโลกในแง่ดี มองเหตุการณ์อย่างมีหวัง มีทัศนคติที่ดี

This year, Stallions will expand its sales network nationwide, with a goal of 90 branches, up from 46. Kittipong Aroonpiroj, the managing director of Motor World Import-Export Co, Stallions' dealer in Laos, said he expects sales of the brand, to start next month, will total 400-500 units this year and 1,500 to 2,000 next year. Mr Jaroen is more optimistic, expecting 600-800 units to be sold this year.

support - help สนับสนุน
support growth - help it grow

niche
- a small specialized area
niche motorcycles - motorcycles for a small group with special needs and likes

leader in niche motorcycles in the Lao market


Motor World Import-Export will this year open 11 more branches nationwide in Laos on top of its existing three in Vientiane to support its growth. "We believe we'll be the leader in niche motorcycles in the Lao market soon," said Mr Kittipong.

variety - many different types of things or people ความหลากหลาย
increasing variety of businesses

households
- families or groups of people living together (economics treats this as a unit that makes decisions)
Thai households

preference
- something that you want or like most ความต้องการ
have a preference for cars - like cars more than other things (such as motorcycles)

emphasis
- special importance or attention that is given to one thing in particular การเน้นย้ำ
emphasis on motorcycles

tends -
what happens usually, the usual pattern
emphasis tends to be on motorcycles

Lao incomes are rising due to the opening up of the country and the increasing variety of businesses. As well, motorcycles are widely used in Laos.  He said Thai households have a preference for cars, but in Laos the emphasis tends to be on motorcycles.

unique - very special, unusual or good ที่มีลักษณะพิเศษ เป็นเอกลักษณ์
modified - changed, changes made to it

Stallions are unique and can also be modified and painted.

expressed interest in - said they were interested in it

decoration - a medal given to someone and worn as an honour เครื่องราชอิสริยาภรณ์, เครื่องยศ, เครื่องหมายเกียรติยศ
props - 1. somthing used for the way it looks (no really used as transportation); 2. objects used by the actors performing in a play or film เครื่องมือ

spurring interest in - making people interested in it; creating interest in it
prevalent - very common แพร่หลาย พบได้บ่อยๆ Rise in hired killings feared

High-end restaurants have also expressed interest in using the motorcycles for decoration or props, thus spurring interest in his company's products, said Mr Kittipong. He said Chinese motorcycles are prevalent in Laos, but these are prone to damage and are priced at 10,000 to 25,000 baht.

popularity - when many people like something
gaining in popularity - when over time, more and more people like something

range - a number of different things that are of the same general type ขอบข่าย, ประเภท
price range - the different prices that a product is sold for

brands - products with well-established names that people remember, that create a certain image and expectations about the product
Thai brands

top-grade - the highest quality level of a product or good

Those from South Korea have been gaining in popularity with a price range of 25,000 to 35,000 baht, while Thai brands are considered top-grade and priced from 44,400 to 80,000 baht.



About the author

columnist
Writer: Jon Fernquest
Position: Online Writer