BKS stays upbeat on megaprojects

BKS stays upbeat on megaprojects

Bangkok Komatsu Sales Co (BKS), a Japan-based heavy machinery distributor, is upbeat about Thai sales as the country steps up investment in megaprojects.

Managing director Vichit Tangprabhaporn said the company forecasts revenue growth in the fiscal year that started in April of 3.4% to 6 billion baht, with new sales rising 38% to 1,200 units.

"Thailand has been revving up investment in megaprojects such as double-track rail, high-speed rail and expansion of Suvarnabhumi airport," he said. "Those projects are expected to drive demand for heavy machinery and equipment to grow by 3.15% to 4,000 units this year, mainly for excavators."

Buoyed by promising prospects, the company is confident of increasing its market share from 22% last fiscal year to 36% this fiscal year.

In the last fiscal year, BKS reported revenue of 5.8 billion baht with 870 new units sold.

Its Tokyo-based parent firm is a manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, forest machines and other industrial gear.

The company chose Thailand as its first overseas market in 1956, forming a joint venture with Siam Motors Group, owned by the Phornprapha family.

Siam Motors set up a subsidiary company, Bangkok Motor Works, to run Komatsu's business locally.

Bangkok Motor Works controls a 60% stake in BKS, with Komatsu Asia & Pacific owning the rest.

Apart from BKS, the Japanese firm has also formed a partnership with the Phornprapha family in four businesses covering manufacturing, after-sales service, machinery leasing and forklift vehicle sales.

Bangkok Komatsu, the manufacturing arm of the venture, operates a plant on the Amata Nakorn Industrial Estate in Chonburi. The plant can produce 9,000-10,000 excavators weighing under 30 tonnes annually, serving 17 countries in Asia-Pacific.

It will also spend 100-200 million baht on promotional activities in 2016.

Mr Vichit said BKS would spend 320 million baht in fiscal 2017 to upgrade its 23 existing outlets and service centres and add one location in Mukdahan.

Meanwhile, BKS has recently expanded into Cambodia, founding a local company named Angkor Motor Works. Bangkok Komatsu and BKS hold a combined stake of 60%, while a Cambodian firm owns the rest of the venture.

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