ABSTRACT

This chapter explores distinctive characteristics of Thai business groups. Notably, the Thai economy has a comparatively high concentration of business and industry monopolies. Two sets of data are analysed, for the top 100 Thai business groups in terms of annual sales/revenue and ownership structure (1989–2018), and the top 20 Thai business groups and business types (1997–2018). The first data set examines who owns, or makes business decisions, in these large companies, while the second illustrates the evolution of Thailand’s major sectors over time.In addition, can Thai business groups compete? Using data on families in Thailand owning billions of baht worth of stocks from 1994 to 2021, this chapter also examines how Thai and foreign investors perceive competitiveness of Thai business groups. Thai business groups will be classified into three categories: (1) Industry 4.0-focused groups, modelled after Germany’s Industry 4.0 prototype and Thailand 4.0 policy to promote S-Curve industries, defined as the industries with intensive innovation and technology; (2) agriculture-focused industrial groups, or the newly agro-industrialized country (NAIC) model; and (3) Marketing 4.0-focused groups, as proposed by Philip Kotler.