Thailand’s biggest drinks company strives to become ASEAN market leader hinh anh 1Thai Beverage’s president and chief executive Thapana Sirivadhanabhakdi (Photo: Bangkok Post)
Bangkok (VNA) – Thailand’s biggest drinks company Thai Beverage (ThaiBev) will allocate 7 billion THB (about 230 million USD) next year to renovate 25-year-old breweries and increase sales from all beverages in populous ASEAN countries in the next six years.

Bangkok Post newspaper quoted Thai Beverage’s president and chief executive Thapana Sirivadhanabhakdi as saying that three breweries located in Kamphaeng Phet and in Ayutthaya are due for a major renovation after brewing for 25 years.

Some of the investment budget in 2020 will be for Sabeco, the brewer of Saigon beer in Vietnam that the company acquired in 2017, to reduce debt and financial costs, he said.

Sabeco is Vietnam’s leading beer by volume with a market share of 40 percent. In the first nine months, 4.4 billion litres of Sabeco was sold in Vietnam, one of the largest beer-consuming countries in the region.

Thapana said Cambodia is another country that drinks mainly beer. The company is exploring acquiring breweries there to boost alcohol sales in ASEAN, one of the fastest-growing regions in the world.

ThaiBev’s Beer Chang and Sabeco’s Bia Saigon together have 23 percent of the ASEAN market.

In 2018, ThaiBev was the largest beverage firm in ASEAN and ranked fifth in Asia by market cap with 18 billion USD and the sixth by net sales with 5.85 billion USD.

Thapana said ThaiBev will focus on healthier drink choices and tap into ASEAN countries, which is a huge market with robust economic growth and large populations.

The beverage market value in ASEAN totals 50 billion USD, while economic growth is strong with a projection of a 54 percent rise from 3.09 trillion USD in 2019 to 4.76 trillion USD in 2025.

Meanwhile, the region’s population is expected to increase from 660 million to 700 million by 2025.

The Thai company aims to be the market leader for all beverages by 2025, Thapana said, adding that key markets are Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos.

Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam, with a combined population of 220 million, will be major markets for expansion.

To boost sales in the non-alcohol segment, ThaiBev will cultivate new markets, including Laos and Cambodia, and focus on profitable stock-keeping units, channels and operations./.