TechArt accessories come to Thailand
European brand sees Kingdom as one of the growing stars in the sector
The Thai Automotive Institute estimates that the auto accessories market is worth as much as Bt50 billion per year, and the figure is growing thanks to the market expansion that is taking place.
Thailand is considered one of the stars in Asia, with a large number of automotive companies establishing production bases to serve the Asean market.
Apart from Japanese companies that dominate the accessories market, European brands are also eager to establish their presence in Thailand. One of them is TechArt, which offers accessories for supercars such as Porsche.
TechArt founder and managing director Thomas Behringer visited Thailand recently to attend the opening of the first TechArt showroom in Thailand.
He told The Nation that it was a childhood inspiration rather than a business decision that drove him to create the brand.
"My first goal was to become manufacturer of tuning parts for a global brand like Porsche, and I achieved it in 1987, the year that the company was founded," Behringer said.
According to Behringer, TechArt was elevated to official accessories dealer for Porsche AG, and two years later it successfully opened up the market in Germany, before expanding to other European markets including Austria, Switzerland, the Scandinavian countries and the United States in 1994.
Growing up with motor sports and competitions, and winning the Porsche Cup touring car titles in 1995-1996, Behringer has been able to absorb the essentials of motorsports and cater to Porsche enthusiasts.
Today, TechArt has an annual income of €300 million (Bt11.7 billion), and Behringer is unable to refrain from opening up new markets in Asia, where all the growth is expected.
"No one can deny that Asia is the market of the future and Thailand is one of the top three markets for us in this region," he said.
TechArt's presence in Thailand is strengthened further by the alliance with MMS Tuning Centre, which is part of Master Group Corporation.
Sunhavut Thamchuanviriya is managing director of the company, which has businesses in seven fields ranging from new cars to maintenance and light repairs, as well as supercars and accessories.
Although TechArt and MMS plan to initially capture a 5-10-per-cent market share within three years, in reality Sunhavut has never been involved with small projects.
"TechArt just entered the Thai market last year at the motor show, and we have been working on brand awareness. This year, however, we will start concentrating more on sales," Behrenger revealed.
Although Germany remains the largest market for TechArt, the potential of Asian markets has grown dramatically, and demand in Thailand is also high, he added.
"Being partners with MMS means that we have staff that are experienced and capable in the automotive business," he said.
MMS sales director Jittisak Wongsiri, who is responsible for TechArt, says sales of TechArt accessories for Porsche vehicles in Thailand are growing at a faster pace.
"After TechArt expanded its business in the Asean region, Thailand is the second country to have an official distributor after Singapore. TechArt sees high market growth for this region and the Thai outlet is located at Sukhumvit 26," Jittisak said.
Prices for TechArt accessory packages range from Bt600,000 to Bt2 million, and they are available for every Porsche model with choices of materials and colours.
Apart from the "Magnum" package for the Cayenne that was introduced earlier this year, MMS has recently introduced the TechArt Boxer 981 package, which includes wind tunnel-tested aerodynamic parts, an exhaust system with volume adjuster inside the car, and TechArt Formula III 19-inch alloy wheels.