For the premier food and pastry business operator S&P Syndicate PLC, nothing bears better testament to the success of its business strategy and concept than its over 45 years in the industry, throughout which it has consistently adjusted its products and services to dovetail with ever-shifting consumer behavior without compromising the quality.
In this issue, we sit down with Mr. Wisaram Khumgasem, Deputy Vice President – Strategic Planning & Business Risk Management, to discuss the perspective and vision of S&P on brand management upon its venture into the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), which is part of the international strategic plan under the Thailand 4.0 scheme.
“S&P Simply Delicious” and its journey from the beginning to where it is now
Throughout the journey of the growth of our brand, S&P has been fortunate in that everyone has more or less experience with us and feels that S&P is a restaurant that they can rely on. If they are looking for something to eat, they can just pop into S&P which serve a difference experience from what people usually do because they usually start with an idea of what they are craving for. This was the origin of the slogan “Simply Delicious,” which we have used since 45 years ago. While customer needs may have shifted, what S&P strives to maintain are the commitment to quality and the goal of making sure that our customers leave our restaurants with positive feelings.
S&P business and marketing strategies in the ever-changing business landscape
Our key business direction is to further enhance the company’s strengths. Therefore, our meticulous attention to the quality of our products and services holds top priority. However, the world is changing at a faster pace than we used to. So, the most important thing is to really understand the experience that our customers are going through to further develop our organization value proposition, and to do that, we need to go to our storefronts and be part of the staff to get our inputs through customer’s lens.
Cracking the lifestyle code through consumer behavior observation
As lifestyles shift at a blinding rate, S&P has made efforts to adapt. Our management, for instance, has been classified according to customer groups, allowing each business unit to deepen the understanding of their target group and evolve along with its context. As for our strategic planning, we still need to review high-level market information as a fundamental to obtain behavior trend, but whether the models that we have developed are the right decision is something that we might need to keep experimenting to find out.
S&P is one of Thailand’s first bakeries to develop both its packaging and store design.
It is our duty to keep our products stay relevant to the context at all times. As packaging contains our products, it must contribute to the contextualization.
On forging collaboration between S&P and clients in other business groups
In addition to thinking of the experience that our customers get from our products and services, we should also consider the entire stakeholder journey, which has given us interesting perspectives. We try to understand our suppliers and employees as well as pay attention to every part of the organization and relevant parties because sustainable development is ultimately rooted in the desire to keep the business running in the long term.
ECC and new challenges for S&P as a food business operator
The additional challenge of expanding into the EEC market would revolve around the operation side of the business, which will move further away from normal reach. Preparations will be needed to ensure that our operation still can satisfy our customers and continuously develop in a different market context.
Dealing with EEC and potential future changes
An organization needs to have a capability of being more agile to stay competitive in new environment. In addition, it should cultivate its philosophy in every part of the organization, starting from the operation-level planning. If this philosophy has been ingrained, the employees will be able to adapt and improve by themselves. Furthermore, it is necessary to make employees in the storefront understand that they need to deliver the best experience to the customers. Most importantly, we must strive to observe and understand customers so as to ensure that they leave as happy customers.
WHAT IS EEC?
A continuation of the Eastern Seaboard Project over 30 years ago, the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) is a project under the government’s national development plan in the Thailand 4.0 scheme. Aimed at elevating the industrial areas in Chonburi, Rayong, and Chachoengsao into a special economic corridor, the project sets out to internationalize U-Tapao Airport and connect it to Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang Airports, which will usher in telecommunications, logistics, and tourism initiatives and ultimately lead to a better quality of life of both existing residents and incoming entrepreneurs, investors, and workers.