CMO Group sees potential in museums

CMO Group, an event organiser, sees potential in the museum business and expects to generate 120 million baht in revenue from this segment next year.

The Legend of Bueng Boraphet Museum in Nakhon Sawan province, detailing the large freshwater swamp and lake, is one of several museums managed by CMO.

Chief executive Sermkhun Kunawong said both the government and private business are driving growth in the museum sector.

Many now see museums as an effective medium for promoting local wisdom, science, medical development, transportation and education.

At present, there are about 100 museums in Thailand, more than half of them state-run.

Mr Sermkhun said growing demand from the government and the private sector will continue at the rate of 15% and 8%, respectively.

CMO estimates the private sector will account for half the market before long.

This year, CMO projects revenue from the management of 11 museum projects at 70 million baht.

It has also secured six deals for next year.

It uses advanced technology to build intelligent museums such as automatically opening and closing buildings when there are no visitors as well as energy-saving measures.

CMO forecasts the museum business will contribute 10% of overall revenue, with another 60% from events and 30% from rental equipment for events.

It expects total revenue will grow by 25% to 1.1 billion baht this year.

Mr Sermkhun said the museum business still has plenty of room to grow as Thailand prepares for implementation of the Asean Economic Community in 2015.

The state and private sectors want to promote themselves to a wider audience.

Mr Sermkhun said SET50 companies will play an important role in boosting the museum business, as they prefer to set up their own museums to tell the history of the company to staff and international guests.

The company offers four museum services _ turnkey museum management, design and construction, construction only, and study and model planning.

"Event management and organising are our core businesses, but these are sensitive to external problems such as political unrest and flooding. Expanding to the museum business will help reduce risks," said Mr Sermkhun.

He said a museum normally needs renovation every 3-5 years, so this means the company can generate steady revenue.

The overall museum market in Thailand is estimated at 2 billion baht with 10% annual growth.

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Writer: Chadamas Chinmaneevong
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