Bitec to spend Bt5 billion on expanding space, developing office building
The Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Centre plans to spend Bt5 billion this year to increase its exhibition space as well as develop a new 30-storey office building in Bang Na. The expansion is in line with the company's vision to become one of the world's best exhibition centres by 2020.
Panittha Buri, Bitec's director of marketing and sales, yesterday said the company had set its short-term mission as being to overtake Singapore as the No 1 exhibition centre in Asean, attracting the highest number of events by 2015.
Thailand has a strong tourism foundation and the cost of organising fairs and exhibitions in the country is about 20 per cent lower than in Singapore, both for the rent of exhibition halls and for accommodation, she said.
"We will invest in the development of our building structure and service to serve the organising of regional fairs and exhibitions. Midyear, we will announce [details of] an investment plan worth at least Bt5 billion for the 25,000-square-metre extended space of our exhibition centre, as well as a 30-floor office building, which will be located on a 170-rai plot in Bang Na district," she said.
Bitec currently has about 50,400sqm of space across six exhibition halls. The 25,000sqm extended area, which will be completed by 2016, will add another four exhibition halls.
The number of grand halls will be increased from only one currently to three halls. The additional grand-hall space will be designed specifically to serve multipurpose events.
"We will also increase our expertise from industrial fairs and exhibitions to more lifestyle events. We are this year going to catch up with entertainment and edutainment clients, such as concert organisers," Panittha said.
She added that Bitec had organised about 400 events last year, of which 60 per cent were trade shows and the remainder were consumer events.
Bitec expects its revenue to surge by 20 per cent this year from the Bt800 million posted for last year. The centre attracts about 3.3 million visitors per annum.