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Pipope Chokwatana, an advisor to Saha Group's distribution arm, describes digital payments as the missing piece to Thailand's e-commerce puzzle. (Photo by Tomohide Yamaguchi)

Thailand's Saha Group sets sights on e-commerce wave

Digital payments 'missing piece' to boost country's online economy as consumption expands, says advisor

TSUBASA SURUGA and MARIMI KISHIMOTO, Nikkei staff writers | Thailand

BANGKOK -- Thailand's consumer products conglomerate Saha Group, which has grown through numerous joint ventures with Japanese companies such as Lion Corp. and lingerie maker Wacoal, is now set to expand its e-commerce channels. The group in June signed an agreement on business tie-ups with Singapore-based online retailer Lazada Group, through which Saha expects its online sales contribution to soar tenfold over the next three years from the current 1%.

In an interview on the sidelines of the Nikkei A300 Global Business Forum in Bangkok, Pipope Chokwatana, the group's founding family member and advisor to its main production and distribution arm Saha Pathanapibul, said the conglomerate will have "many more partners" to boost the online business. He also said Thailand's consumption will expand in the next two to five years due to government spending on infrastructure projects.

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