WHA turns to digitalisation in bid to become tech firm

WHA turns to digitalisation in bid to become tech firm

WHA Group, a developer and provider of industrial estates, logistics, utilities and power, as well as digital platform services, aims to become a tech company by 2024 by making the most of technology to digitalise the firm and better serve its customers.

The plan was announced yesterday as WHA said it was targeting 20% growth in revenue and share of profits.

In the first half of 2022, WHA revenue and share of profits soared by more than 30% year-on-year to 4.4 billion baht.

The company's 50-billion-baht five-year investment plan, which started this year, will continue to generate good returns, support digital transformation across its four businesses, and apply more smart technologies, said Jareeporn Jarukornsakul, chairman and group chief executive of WHA Group.

The firm is currently improving the capabilities and innovation skill sets of its employees, part of efforts to turn itself into a data-driven organisation and build a digital-ready culture in order to become a tech company.

WHA is also exploring technologies to develop new business models, with a plan to launch "Meta W", the first industrial metaverse designed to enhance the customer experience and strengthen WHA's businesses.

"The investment plan, including our digital transformation, will pave the way for our long-term success, towards our upcoming status as a tech company," said Ms Jareeporn.

In the logistics business, WHA continues to explore smart technologies through collaborations with startups.

Areas under study include smart warehouses, applications of quantum computing, and green transport.

WHA recently invested in two e-commerce startups: business-to-consumer startup Mercular, which specialises in hobby lifestyle and technology products; and business-to-business e-commerce venture Mungmee, which aims to revolutionise Thailand's traditional trade by integrating digitisation, advanced technology, and data in the supply chain.

For industrial estates, WHA is planning to develop a new industrial zone spanning 5,625 rai in Vietnam's Thanh Hoa province, the country's third-largest province by population. The new facility will serve high-value tech investors and support Vietnam's Northern Technology Corridor.

According to WHA, its industrial land sales in Thailand and Vietnam reached a total of 513 rai in the first half of this year.

The Thai government's reopening of the country and subsequent economic recovery has led to the return of investors, said Ms Jareeporn.

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