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Digitisation to drive Thai economy, AWS chief says

THAILAND’S future economic growth will be driven by digitisation that enables new products and services in various sectors, according to Nick Walton, who heads Amazon Web Services (AWS) in Asean.

Walton said during an interview on the sidelines of last week’s AWS Summit in Bangkok that the healthcare, manufacturing (both traditional and new versions based on the Internet of Things), agriculture and financial-technology sectors were among those likely to benefit from the fast-changing digital technology.
Digitisation will play a big role in the government’s “Thailand 4.0” modernisation programme, said Walton, adding that it would help turbo-charge the growth of new entrepreneurs and innovation here.
For example, Toyota Tsusho (Thailand) has used AWS’s cloud-based computing facilities to help develop a traffic-flow management system that allows faster and more efficient movement of vehicles.
Another example is 2C2P, an e-payment gateway, currently used by Thai Airways International and Myanmar Airlines as well as other companies in Asean countries.
In his opinion, cloud-based computing will also help democratise access to world-class technology, since there is no significant investment required for entrepreneurs. Instead of having to invest substantially in information-technology infrastructure, cloud-based services allow users to pay as they go based on what they actually use.
Mark Rachelski, chief architect of aCommerce, said the firm had taken advantage of AWS’s cloud-based services to grow its business in Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and Singapore.
ACommerce provides digital marketing, online store hosting, branding, and logistics services to both online and offline clients. The firm’s online marketplace also works with clients and partners such as L’Oreal, Unilever, Lazada and 400 other vendors to deliver omni-channel marketing and related services.
Consumer goods, fashion products, food and electronics are among the major items sold online via the aCommerce platform in the 10-country Asean market.
The four-year-old start-up needs cloud-based computing for speed to market and to avoid large upfront IT investments.
Walton said there had been strong momentum around the world in enterprises of all sizes in migration from on-premise computing facilities to cloud-based services.
By turning to cloud-based services, enterprises can better focus on their core businesses instead of IT requirements.
To boost awareness of this trend, AWS last week attracted about 1,000 participants to its conference in Bangkok. Thai commercial banks, telecommunication companies, retailers and other sectors expressed interest in cloud-based services, which allow faster launches of new products and services along with long-term cost savings.
Walton said awareness and education were the keys to increasing the use of cloud-based services.
In the banking sector, for example, the Development Bank of Singapore (DBS) aims to migrate half of its on-premise computing facilities to cloud-based services over the next two years.
According to Walton, the global cloud-based computing business jumped by 43 per cent in the first quarter of this year compared with the same period a year earlier.
Mobile applications, big data, e-commerce, analytics, start-ups, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things are among the key drivers of cloud-based computing facilities.
To date, about 26,000 large databases around the world have migrated to cloud-based computing and the shift is likely to remain strong.

Published : June 02, 2017