TSCA malls investing THB57 billion in growth
Thai Shopping Centres Association (TSCA) members are investing THB57 billion (US$1.7 billion) to increase their combined mall space to more than 9.1 million square metres by 2019.
The industry group says the expansion is in line with its “Shopping Centre 4.0” vision, aimed at serving the lifestyles of consumers in the digital era and strengthening Thailand as one of the top destinations in Asean.
The TSCA comprises the top 13 companies in shopping-centre sector: Boonthavorn Ceramics, Central Pattana, Index Living Mall, KE Land, LH Mall & Hotel, MBK, Pacific Park Sriracha, Rangsit Plaza, Seacon Development, Siam Future Development, Siam Piwat Group, The Mall Group and The Platinum Group. The companies run 97 malls with 8 million square metres in combined space.
TSCA president Wallaya Chirathivat says members would invest alongside the government’s infrastructure projects in the major provinces and in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) project. They would also announce co-investment projects and giant shopping-centre projects destined to become global landmarks.
She says the association is ready to help support local SMEs and distribute income to provinces. “The TSCA vision for this year is that together we will transform the retail industry to keep up with changing consumer lifestyles, aiming to grow by 4 to 5 per cent this year with three strategies.”
Consumers as competitors
The strategies are: customer-centric, which addresses the design of shopping centres and provision of services; omnichannel, to offer a seamless shopping experience and provide personalised services by using big data; and building partnerships, turning competitors into partners “because the most challenging competitor now is the consumer”.
TSCA member shopping centres will link to support government policies and promote shopping districts in Bangkok and tourist cities to help spur the economy and tourism.
“We will also continue to invest in mega-projects to help push the economy and to establish new landmarks for Thailand,” says Wallaya. “Two mega-projects that will become Thai landmarks are expected to open next year – Central Phuket and IconSiam.
“TSCA members have been united in embracing government policies that support countrywide development and we will invest in provinces where the government plans to build mega-infrastructure projects such as motorways, double-track railways and high-speed railways.”
Following infrastructure work in northeastern Thailand, TSCA members have developed CentralPlaza Korat and Terminal 21 Korat, plus expanded The Mall Korat.
“We are also investing in the EEC special economic zone covering Chon Buri (Pattaya) and Rayong with projects such as Central Marina, CentralPlaza Rayong and Terminal 21 Pattaya as well as investing in the eastern Bangkok zone in Bangna-Suvarnabhumi in projects such as Bangkok Mall, Megacity and Seacon City, plus renovating CentralPlaza Bangna.”
Meanwhile, the TSCA has engaged with RetailEx Asean 2017, a regional trade event allowing retail entrepreneurs to expand into the Asean market, and will soon join the ICSC Recon Asia-Pacific event, where Wallaya will be a speaker on the topics of “shopping centre business expansion” and “Thai retail to regional markets”.