Tencent plans video production
Tencent Thailand, formerly known as Sanook Online, plans to set up a production facility for online video content next year to capitalise on new digital consumption habits and platforms.
The development is also aimed at widening Tencent's local entertainment and multimedia service portfolios and revenue streams, said Krittee Manoleehagul, managing director of Tencent Thailand.
Chinese internet giant Tencent took over Sanook Online, the operator of one of the leading websites in Thailand, sanook.com, in 2012. Sanook Online changed its name to Tencent Thailand this month.
"We will use Thailand as a springboard to enter the Indochina market," Mr Krittee said. "Thailand and Indonesia are the top two potential markets in Asean for Tencent, due to their emerging economies and large internet population."
He said new-generation consumers are increasingly watching long-form video content over the internet on any screen.
China's Tencent is committed to continuing investment in Thailand in 2017, focusing on video-based content serving both professionals and end users.
Tencent Thailand provides sanook.com with 36 million users a month and online music mobile application Joox service with 23 million users. The company does not provide visual multimedia content.
Tencent Thailand, through its subsidiary Topspace, also provides marketing and online advertising services. Topspace helps brands reach Chinese consumers via WeChat, China's popular messaging app.
"We will bring more Tencent products and services from China to Thailand, particularly successful web-based applications and mobile games," Mr Krittee said.
Tencent Thailand plans to introduce news feeds on mobile app NoozUp by March next year, targeting upper secondary school students.
Mr Krittee said the company plans to expand its NoozUp service to other countries if it finds success in the Thai market.
China's Tencent is also looking towards mergers and acquisitions through a venture capital fund in a Series A offering, targeting local content startup companies in the expansion phase.
Tencent Thailand last week opened a new portal website, muan.sanook.com, in Laos through a partnership with local partners.
The company is also exploring opportunities to invest in Myanmar, Mr Krittee said.