Japan’s Autobacs is aiming to be the top car-service brand in Thailand, by increasing its branches and adding more services for customers.
Autobacs has been known to Thais for around 20 years since its first branch was established in Thailand. However, initially boasting only 10-12 branches, its fame did not spread across the whole country.
The turning point for the brand came in 2014, when PTG Energy (PTG) bought a stake in the parent company, Siam Autobacs. PTG currently owns 76.52 per cent of Siam Autobacs shares.
PTG executive vice-president Rangsun Puangprang said the car-service business has a long future, while Autobacs is a market leader in Japan and is also well received in Thailand.
Rangsun added that PTG is able to improve Autobacs thanks to its strength as a big fuel retailer in Thailand. PTG also has a network of filling stations across the country, as well as reliable alliances, especially in the auto sector.
“We have a huge customer base, considering the 18 million holders of PT Max Cards [the PT filling station card]. It is advantageous for us to stage campaigns or point-collection activities” he said.
The executive vice-president also said that Autobacs’ network of branches must be extended to promote growth of the brand among competitors.
Autobacs currently has 16 branches, with another four about to open. By the end of this year, there will be 30 branches, if the Covid-19 situation in Thailand improves, Rangsun added.
Turning to the virus situation, he mentioned that the market was normalising at the end of 2020 but is now frozen by the current outbreak in 2021. “However, PTG believes in this market in the long term. The total number of Autobacs branches will reach 250 to 300 within 4 or 5 years,” he added.
Rangsun said promotion of the Autobacs brand will get a boost, while service quality and variety will also be improved.
“We plan to adapt Autobacs for the changing situation. For example, people are now avoiding leaving home due to Covid-19, so we will provide mobile servicing at their home,” he explained. “Also, we plan to tap several target groups, including women, people who don’t have enough time to take care of their cars, and those who need to control their expenditure.”
Another service PTG will offer under the Autobacs brand is pre-ordering of decoration parts from Japan.
Rangsun concluded that work on expanding Autobacs will run continually, with the aim of making the brand well-known among customers and a top brand in Thailand within the next 3 or 4 years.
Published : June 30, 2021