Bangchak sets $50m investment budget in bio, green-energy startups

Corporate December 17, 2018 01:00

By   JIRAPAN BOONNOON,
THE NATION
MACAU SAR, CHINA

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BANGCHAK will invest US$50 million in startups within the next five years in order to expand their core business and technologies with the goal to emerge as the leading innovative group of its kind in the Asean bloc.



The firm expects to generate revenue growth to more than double in the next five years. The firm also has plans to set up solar rooftops at 14 gas stations over the coming years.

Suwat Meemook, executive vice president of Bangchak Initiative and Innovation Centre (BIIC), a part of Bangchak Corporation, said the firm is heading toward a transformation its current “Green Energy Excellence” vision to one of ‘Evolving Greenovation’

He spoke to The Nation at the International Innovation Summit 2018 in Macau. To drive its transportation and new S-curve business, the firm will invest US$50 million (Bt1.64 billion) of corporate venture capital (CVC) during 2019-2024 targeting startups in the US, China and Europe, he said.

The firm will seek to invest in startups in two main areas – bio-based and green-energy startups. For bio-based investments, it is looking for startups developing innovative products such as bio-plastics, nutrition and batteries.

In the green energy sector, the firm will focus on solar roofs, wind-turbines and e-vehicle power plants.

“We want to expand businesses now in oil and gas into bio-based and green-energy businesses. Therefore, we will develop and produce high-value products to support both domestic and international market demand.

“We will also set up a corporate innovation framework, the Bangchak Innovation Culture Initiative and innovation activities, to support innovative business at every angle from the bottom to top management,” said Surawat.

Their approach has won Bangchak the “organisation and culture” award at the International Innovation Awards 2018 held by Enterprise Asia.

“I think that bio-based and green energy businesses will create new opportunities and have a high potential growth in the near future,” said Suwat.

However, the firm last year started to invest in four startups valued at $5 million in the US and South America, including a small wind-turbine that is able to produce green energy at home, and battery technology. The firm expects to come out new innovative and commercial products from its startups in the next couple of years.

Within the next five years, he said, the firm expects to double its current revenues.

Chokchai Atsawarangsalit, executive vice president for business marketing and oil terminal at Bangchak Corporation, said their strategy focuses on developing green experience and green innovation for customers of the modern generation.

To drive green energy and sustainability, the firm has invested Bt70 million to develop and pilot an unique smart modernised service station. The “green community energy management system” (GEMS) located at Bangchak Srinakarin, in Samuthprakarn province is a “greenergy” service station able to reduce building and retails costs as well as offering future promise for electricity trading.

The GEMS is composed of PV rooftop installations on the service station’s canopy, commercial buildings and carports. It has a combined capacity of 279 kW, as well as allowing 1MWh of storage using the largest operating lithium battery storage (NMC and LPF) and microgrid system.

The firm next year will invest to develop and implement solar rooftops at 14 gas stations, including Bang Bua Thong 2, Teparak km11 and AOT Suvarnabhumi. 

Already, the firm has set up solar rooftops at 14 gas stations, including on Vibhavadi Rangsit Road, Ratchaphruek Road and Srinakarin Road.

 

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