Samart sees prospects for turnaround

Samart sees prospects for turnaround

Projection based on public projects

Mr Watchai, right, and Mr Ruttanun at the launch of mobile security app PokPong.
Mr Watchai, right, and Mr Ruttanun at the launch of mobile security app PokPong.

SET-listed tech and ICT solution provider Samart Corporation targets a business turnaround this year with a projection of 15 billion baht in revenue, driven by large government projects and aggressive moves in digital solutions.

It is also eyeing investment in deep tech startups and new business frontiers, such as waste management.

“This year, Samart group expects a business turnaround and sees positive results with 15 billion baht in revenue,” said Watchai Vilailuck, executive vice-chairman in charge of corporate strategy and new business development at Samart.

The company’s revenue fell from 14.3 billion baht in 2019 to 9.5 billion last year.

Samart Aviation Solutions, an air navigation service provider in Cambodia under Samart, saw revenue drop due to a decline in travel traffic as a result of the pandemic, he said.

The postponement of government projects also affected subsidiary Samart Telcoms, a SET-listed tech and network solution provider. Samart Telcoms mostly bids on government projects.

The company racked up 309 million baht in losses last year, but the company is targeting profits this year, he said.

Samart is gearing up for the development of so-called business to government to consumer (B2G2C) solutions through ICT with flexible business models, such as through revenue sharing or pay-per-use methods.

For example, Samart has just clinched a deal to provide direct coding solutions on beer packaging to increase tax collection efficiency for the Excise Department.

The 8-billion-baht project is under a seven-year contract.

“The project is expected to earn us 1 billion baht in revenue per year,” said Mr Watchai.

There are also other large projects on the cards, including digital banking for Government Housing Bank and a 4-billion-baht project for the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand as well as a 6-billion-baht land transaction system for the Department of Lands.

The company has signed project deals worth almost 1 billion baht in total in the first quarter, said Mr Watchai.

Throughout this year, around 8 billion baht in contracts are expected to be signed by the company, up from 3.2 billion baht last year.

Regarding digital business, the company expects a turnaround with revenue from digital truck radio services, fortune-telling services as well as a new mobile security app.

According to Mr Watchai, the company invested 20 million baht to develop a mobile security application called PokPong, powered by technology from US-based mobile security firm Lookout, which has over 150 million users globally.

Users pay a monthly package of 59 baht for app usage. The company aims to have 1 million users within one year.

“As Thais adopt mobile banking apps and make payments for games, they should be concerned about data protection,” said Ruttanun Vilailuck, brand and marketing executive for PokPong app.

The PokPong app is available for Android users and will be on the Apple Store next month.

Regarding the utility and transport businesses, the company will focus on features that can generate sustainable revenue, he said. The company is also looking into energy management projects.

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