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Press Release

New Generation of Thai Hospitality Entrepreneurs to Lead Discussion on Thailand's Tourism Future at TTF 2017

(Immediate Release – Phuket, 17 November 2017)

BANGKOK, THAILAND: Thailand Tourism Forum (TTF), an influential annual gathering of top hotel industry professionals in the Thai capital, will be held on Monday January 23, 2017 at the InterContinental Hotel Bangkok.

Now in its sixth year, TTF is organised by Thailand's American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM) and C9 Hotelworks with support from InterContinental Hotel Group and continues to position itself as a key platform for hospitality business leaders and tourism experts to candidly discuss the state of the industry. The upcoming edition of TTF will focus on how Thailand's tourism sector can adapt and maintain a strong, long-term growth trajectory while embracing disruptive trends that range from the sharing economy to a significant growth in millennial domestic travellers.

Despite global economic woes, extreme currency fluctuations and considerable domestic challenges, Thailand has continued to see a steady increase tourist arrivals through 2016. The Tourism Authority of Thailand recently announced that the country is on track to exceed arrival targets for this year, which will generate more than THB 2.58 trillion (USD $73.7 billion) in tourism revenue for the country – up 14% from 2015.

Even amid such a positive big picture outlook, persistent challenges remain for Thailand's hospitality sector. For hotels, there's the constant task of maintaining ADR and achieving respectable RevPar in an increasingly competitive regional marketplace; for destination-focused businesses there's the need to remain agile and fresh in a constantly evolving travel landscape. These demands and market dynamics will be analyzed by expert presenters and debated via lively panel discussions at the Thailand Tourism Forum 2017 during a full afternoon programme that flows into a well attended networking event.

"In a world of instant updates and ever-changing travel technologies, trends and attitudes, it's more important than ever to be an innovative player in the industry," says Bill Barnett, Managing Director, C9 Hotelworks, one of the event's founders and organizers. "TTF 2017 will focus on key statistics and emerging trends. It will also showcase some of the powerful new Thai regional destination brands that have emerged in recent years, and consider how new ideas and aspirations are reshaping hospitality."

Underlining the importance of new generation thinking for hotels and hospitality businesses in Thailand, TTF will this year welcome Vorasit 'Wan' Issara, Managing Director of Sri panwa, a member company of Charn Issara Group. Sri panwa is one of Thailand's leading luxury hotels and Wan is very active in the Group's hospitality undertakings which also include Baba Beach Club Hotel in Phang Nga and Baba Beach Club Hotel in Cha Am – Hua Hin.

Also among the panelist will be Gavin Vongkusolkit, Founder & MD, founder and managing director of Heritage Estates Co., Ltd. which owns and operates Ad Lib Hotel, Glowfish Serviced Offices, various office properties in Bangkok, and six outlets of KuppaDeli cafes. Gavin has served as a director of the Erawan Group Plc. since 2011, and is also a director of YEC - the Young Entrepreneurs of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (Bangkok Chapter).

After thought provoking opening remarks from Mr. Barnett, which traditionally set the scene for the dynamic discussions that follow, presenters at TTF 2017 will include Jesper Palmqvist, Area Director – Asia Pacific, STR, Nihat Ercan, Executive Vice President, Investment Sales Asia, JLL and Wimintra Jangnin – Editor in Chief – Hotel Intel. The panels will be moderated by Charles Blocker, CEO, IC Partners, Robert V. R. Hecker, Managing Director, Horwath HTL, David Keen, CEO, QUO and Eric Levy, Managing Director, TSI.

Senior executives from a number of leading international hotel brands will also join the panel discussions, including InterContinental Hotels Group, ONYX Hospitality Group, Dusit International, Rosewood Hotel Group and Accor Hotels. They will be joined by top level representatives from major Thai Hotels including Plaza Athenee Bangkok and The Siam Bangkok, as well as the offer mentioned Sri panwa and The Slate on Phuket. Expert opinion will also be provided by Khun Tanes Petsuwan, Deputy Governor – International Marketing Strategy, Tourism Authority of Thailand, Mark Simmons, Marketing Advisor, Phuket Hotels Association, Chittimas Ketvoravit, Managing Director, D.K. Lam Properties and Khun Vorada Jia Thangsurbkul, FEVP Investment Banking Division, Siam Commercial Bank Plc.

"The 2016 forum was our best yet with more than 500 delegates. We expect TTG 2017 to be even bigger as it not only offers a unique opportunity for considered conversation but also the chance for professionals to connect with their industry peers," said Charles Blocker.

Attendance at TTF 2017 is free of charge with advanced registration required. Please visit www.amchamthailand.com for online registrations, or contact [email protected] or call (+66) 02-254-1041 (ext. 212) for more information.

To see a full programme of the upcoming forum, please visit www.thailandtourismforum.com.

For further information and high-resolution photography, please contact:

David Johnson
Delivering Asia Communications
E-mail: [email protected]
Tel: +66 (0) 2246 1159
Mobile: +66 (0) 89 170 9866
www.deliveringcommunications.com

Note to Writers and Editors

Thailand Tourism Forum is an annual event held every January and organized by the American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM) Thailand and leading hospitality consultancy C9 Hotelworks. Now in its sixth year, the event attracts leading industry speakers and a growing number of delegates from around the region. Thailand Tourism Forum offers delegates a unique opportunity to hear hospitality leaders and experts candidly discuss the industry and a forum to take a closer look at numbers, evaluate risk and learn more about important new trends in tourism across all Thai travel destinations.

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