US-based Carrier, the world's leader in air conditioning and refrigeration products, targets doubling its sales in the residential air conditioner market in Thailand within three years.
Harald Link (centre), chairman of B.Grimm, announced the joint venture on Thursday, joining Ross Shuster (second right), president ofUTC Climate, Controls &Security Asia; Woraset Tantisiriwat (far left), managing director of B.Grimm Carrier (Thailand); Caroline Link (second left), president of BGrimm Real Estate, and Ardi Rammanee(far right),MDof Carrier (Thailand).
The announcement was made after Carrier established a joint venture with its long-term Thai partner B.Grimm Group of Companies, a leading Thai conglomerate.
B.Grimm Carrier Thailand, with initial registered capital of 160 million baht, is 51% held by B.Grimm Joint Venture Holding, with the rest belonging to United Technologies International Corporation-Asia PTE, the US parent of Carrier.
In 2012, Carrier achieved total sales of 3.5 billion baht in Thailand, up 30% year-on-year, with one-third contributed from the residential market.
Carrier, whose production line includes the Toshiba brand, projects rapid growth in the Thai market.
"The new joint venture with B.Grimm will accelerate growth, particularly in the residential segment," said Ross Shuster, president for Asia of UTC Climate, Controls & Security.
The new firm will leverage Carrier's global research and development expertise and world-class manufacturing facilities, including the Toshiba-Carrier manufacturing facility in Bangkok.
Thailand's total air conditioning market was valued at 24 billion baht last year, up 5% over 2011.
The residential segment dominated 67% of the overall market, with sales of 16 billion baht and 1.2 million units, while the commercial sector accounted for 33% or 8 billion baht at 300,000 units, according to Ardi Rammanee, the managing director of Carrier (Thailand).
"We want to focus solely on residential and leverage our research and development to be a world-class manufacturer," he added.
The move is expected to push Carrier's outlets in Thailand to more than 800 from 500.
The joint venture is allocating 30 million baht for advertising in the Thai market, with an aim to achieve a top five ranking for residential air conditioners within five years.
UTC appointed B.Grimm as a sales agent back in 1962, set up a production plant in Thailand in 1969, then merged with Toshiba's air-conditioning unit in 1999.
Mr Shuster said energy consumption from air conditioning accounts for 16% of the country's total, so the firm wants to develop energy-saving technology.
About the author
- Writer: Yuthana Praiwan
Position: Business Reporter