By JIRAPAN BOONNOON
The new lab will provide one-stop support to enterprises’ information and communications technology infrastructure as well as to facilitate Thailand’s digital transformation drive.
David Sun, president and chief executive officer, Southeast Asia region, of Huawei Technologies, said the company would invest a total of $15 million (more than Bt500 million) to set up its seventh OpenLab. The others are in Suzhou, China; Mexico City; Munich; Singapore; Johannesburg; and Dubai.
OpenLab Bangkok is in a 2,000-square-metre space at G Tower that also houses Huawei Thailand’s new headquarters. It is the second-biggest Huawei laboratory and its biggest outside China.
The new lab will cooperate with more than 40 international and local partners such SAP, Microsoft, Chulalongkorn University, Honeywell, Bombardier, Oracle, Accenture and Infosys.
Sun said OpenLab Bangkok would help Huawei’s customers and business partners in digital transformation, offering them an open platform and data-centre resources to help test solutions and speed up innovations. It will also provide ICT training services.
Primarily, the OpenLab will be a research and development centre for new Huawei products and services. Meanwhile, the lab will support partners in Southeast and East Asian locations such as Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia, Taiwan and Hong Kong.
The lab will also provide platforms to support universities and digital start-ups so that they will able to develop innovative products and services.
OpenLab Bangkok will facilitate Huawei’s joint innovation and solution launches with its customers and partners in Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries, including the development of smart cities, public safety, smart grids, finance, education, transport, and Internet service providers.
“Combined with the government’s policies on [its] digital-economy initiative, Thailand 4.0 and the Eastern Economic Corridor, Thailand is taking shape as a regional ICT hub,” Sun said.
“We believe that with its stable political [and] economic environment, digital-economy policies, BOI [Board of Investment] privileges, convenient aviation, and sufficient ICT talents, Thailand will be an even better choice for international enterprises.”
He said OpenLab Bangkok would offer ICT training to 800 persons per year, ICT career certification to 500 persons per year, and proof concept testing to 150 persons per year. It is also expected to welcome more than 20 batches of ICT start-up companies’ visits or communications annually.
He said Huawei planned to add seven new OpenLabs this year, and over the next three years would invest $200 million to bring the total number of OpenLabs to 20 by 2019.
Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak said OpenLab Bangkok would be an important step through which Huawei would provide a platform to support the Eastern Economic Corridor while also assisting local e-commerce and small and medium-sized enterprises.