The year 2017 is considered to be a successful year for the Company in terms of operating results with our net profit reaching record high since its establishment. The Company records 3,266 million Baht net profit, an increase of 13% compared to the previous year. Our record high net profit is mainly attributable to a successful collaboration between our four business hubs: Logistics Hub, Industrial Development Hub, Utilities & Power Hub and Digital Platform Hub. We have also gradually expanded our operations to cover new businesses related to our core ones, enabling us to achieve sustainable growth and provide comprehensive services to our customers in accordance with our business slogan, “Your Ultimate Solution Partner.”
Our core businesses are essential drivers of the national economic growth, as well as the manufacturing industry, Foreign Direct Investment, and the reduction of logistics cost from manufacturers to consumers. Thus, the Company is ready to respond to and support the Thai Government’s Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) policy as well as infrastructure development of the country since the policy will contribute greatly to the growth of the Company. In addition, all of the Company’s four business hubs are commensurate with the goals and development of EEC policy, which begin with encouraging foreign investors to use Thailand as a manufacturing base, production center, and transportation hub to move goods from Southeast Asia to other regions of the world, especially for borderless connectivity between four countries in Mekong Sub-region, namely, Cambodia, Laos PDR, Myanmar, and Vietnam. The Company is ready to upgrade its industrial estate into the Smart IE. We place a high priority on technological development because we believe that technology will contribute to ultimate performance, such as applying Internet of Thing (IoT) to the provision of basic services to an industrial estate. With regard to our warehouses, factories, and distribution centers for rent, we have carefully studied the implementation of the automation systems to maximize our customers’ operational effectiveness. Furthermore, the platforms that the Company provides services to our customers in Thailand can be used to expand businesses overseas as per requirements of customers in each country. For example, in Vietnam where importance is placed on manufacturing, the Company has invested in industrial estates and provided utilities and power services. As for Indonesia, which puts importance on logistics cost reduction, the Company has invested in distribution center for rent.
Additionally, the Company has received approval of the Eastern Economic Corridor Policy Committee, enabling all of the eight industrial estates already in operation in EEC area to receive better tax privileges than those provided by BOI. Such privileges also cover companies investing in the industrial estates and foreign specialists and personnel working in Thailand in 10 targeted industries, such as aviation and logistics, industrial robotics, and future automotive industry.
Moreover, I believe that technological advancements have come to the point where the people have to be well prepared for potential impacts, either in their personal lives or business operations. I am confident that the successful businesses in the future will combine the original business platforms, which is infrastructure base, with new technology to maximize business operations; for example, the use of energy storage system to store solar energy from rooftop PV systems for customers to reduce the cost of solar rooftop, or utilization of blockchain technology to create an ecosystem for customers. In this regards, the Company’s business hubs, namely, industrial development, logistics, utilities & power, which tend to becoming more decentralized, will serve as intermediaries, and the digital platforms developed by the Company will be used to support such technology. Furthermore, the Company is ready to modify and improve its major infrastructures to meet such change and contribute to a sustainable growth.
Finally, on behalf of the Chairman, the Group CEO, and the Board of Directors, I would like to thank you all for your continued support and contribution to our success. I would like to express my gratitude to all shareholders for your trust, all customers for allowing us to serve you, financial institutions for supporting our growth, our business partners, Board of Directors, management team and all employees for your continued trust, support, and involvement in the Company’s growth and success for the past 15 years since its establishment. For the year 2018, we are confident that the Company will seek to move forward and grow sustainably, dedicate and work to create the best value for the society, our shareholders, our customers, and our stakeholders