Chief Executive Officer
In 2017, Thailand’s real estate industry was challenged to the core by internal and external factors. The big question is: What caused the rapid turnaround of the real estate industry today? It is safe to say that the country’s overall economy, coupled with the consumer index, inevitably influenced the growth of the real estate sector. One obvious change is in the makeup of industry competitors. Just 4-5 years ago, a familiar scenario was of the big fish eating the small fish. Today, equally prepared major players are fiercely competing in terms of product innovation, quality assurance and after sales service.
While business differentiation is a key to survival in the midst of intense competition, simply surviving during difficult times is not the goal that AP aspires to. In the middle of last year, I had the opportunity to participate in a special programme at Stanford University on a subject that is of great interest to business leaders around the world: What can leaders do to make their organization survive in a fast-changing business environment that has unprecedented repercussions for businesses worldwide?
At Stanford University, I sensed that change is creeping closer and closer to us and this will be exciting to those who see opportunities, but terrifying to complacent business leaders. The first question raised after my return to Thailand was: What can we do to make people in the organization move quickly enough? What can we do to make AP people understand unmet customer needs? We started by adopting Stanford University’s Design Thinking programme, a thinking approach and process which many of the world’s leading organizations such as Google, Facebook, Adidas and Amazon used as a major tool to innovate customer-centric products and services.
In addition to elevating the potential and mindset of people in the organization to cope with change, AP experienced an amazingly successful 2017, performance-wise. Condominiums and low-rise developments recorded presales of 42,900 million baht - a new record high. It was a 92% growth from the previous year, exceeding our projected presales of 26,000 million baht by 165%. In addition to the launch of low-rise developments – 22 new detached house and townhome projects whose sales have continued to grow solidly – the jump in presales growth last year was also attributable to the successful launch of three Life condominium projects, namely Life Ladprao, Life Wireless and Life Asoke–Rama 9, which were 90% sold. The higher-than-expected successful performance was also attributed to the company’s strong portfolio of more than 90 ongoing projects.
For 2018, the company aims to be one of the top 3 real estate developers in Thailand retaining our principal mission to deliver good living quality in all aspects. We will continue innovating Thailand’s real estate sector. We plan to establish a special unit to explore, discover and develop innovations that promote and improve new and all-inclusive living experiences, that will provide convenience and safety for better living quality in the long term.
The company aims to achieve further success through five strategic drivers: 1) building on our successful partnership with Mitsubishi Estate; 2) launching super-luxury products; 3) making a difference through mass customized design in low-rise developments; 4) expanding AP’s international portfolio; and 5) developing digital innovation for good quality of life.
Our quality residential product portfolio, together with quality partners and quality team who share the same passion to create quality residential innovations, I believe AP Thailand will continue to make a difference and win the consumer’s trust while keeping abreast of the future. We can stand tall as a top 3 real estate company in Thailand that offers residential innovation and technology through continued research and development.
On behalf of AP (Thailand) Public Company Limited, I would like to thank our shareholders, debenture holders and business partners for your continued trust and support. I hope you will continue to walk together with us in our journey to mutual success.