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SCG emphasizes innovation in 2021 business plan

Giant conglomerate aims for customer-centric digital transformation

Thailand’s largest industrial conglomerate, Siam Cement Group (SCG), has released a business plan for 2021 that positions the giant organization as the country’s leader in home innovations.

It says trends that emphasize good hygiene, well-being, working from home, and care for the environment will be key growth drivers in the market for building materials and living with “newly-emerged challenges” – a clear reference to life after Covid-19. 

The company says it will digitize its business in aligning with the “new normal”, and its use of digital technology will be intensified to strengthen business operations across all supply chains, with an overall concept of “transformation with innovation”. 

The 2021 business plan will drive forward three key areas of excellence: innovation and service solutions, digital transformation, and sustainable development. The company says new innovations can be expected across SCG’s range of products, services and solutions. Moreover, it will address changing consumer behavior with SCG HOME Active Omni-Channel, an offline and online store connected by digital technology, offering convenient access to products and services anytime, anywhere, 24 hours a day. Thus, the company will emphasize its social and environmental contributions side-by-side with business growth and development of SCG people, to keep them abreast of the changing world. The company expects to increase by 30 per cent the number of products with its self-certified Green Choice labelling this year.

 The President of SCG’s Cement Building Materials Business, Nithi Patarachoke, said both the market for building materials and lifestyles in 2021 will be driven by people’s well-being needs. 

“Consumers are looking for products and solutions that provide health, safety, and hygiene for good living,” he said. “At the same time, with the increase in remote working, consumers are looking for digital technologies that will enable them to work from home more conveniently. They are also increasingly aware of sustainable development and have a growing preference for eco-friendly products and solutions.”

Based on these trends, Nithi said SCG would adopt a “transformation with innovation” approach by intensifying its use of digital technology to tap into new opportunities, address customers’ needs, and reinforce its business operations from upstream to downstream. The 2021 business plan would feature three main strategies:

  • Innovation and service solutions for consumers’ good health and hygiene will be the focus of new developments. Product launches later this year will include a Smart Building Solution that employs IoT (Internet of Things) technology to improve air quality and increase energy efficiency. 

Product diversification in the bathroom category will see additions to the COTTO Touchless Series of sanitary hardware and anti-bacterial COTTO Hygienic Tiles. Moreover, innovations in response to the Covid-19 pandemic will make construction quicker, cleaner and safer, such as a medical solution by CPAC BIM, a bathroom mobile unit, and a positive air-pressure room built with the Smart Board Ultra Clean wall solution, making it a protective environment. Innovations in energy efficiency and eco-friendliness will include Active Air Quality and Solar Roof solutions that have already been launched on the non-residential market. At the same time, a Smart Living Platform will enable customers to manage SCG solutions within their homes. BAUEN by SCG will also be launched as an end-to-end renovation-service solution, adding to existing construction and living solutions, underscoring SCG’s positioning as a provider of end-to-end services.

  • Digital transformation will integrate digital technology into every aspect of SCG’s business. On the consumer front, stores will be more e-commerce oriented, connecting offline and online store experiences with SCG HOME Active Omni-Channel technology. 

Big data analytics and artificial-intelligence technology will be used to gain customer insights for the development of future products and services, and to build a stronger ecosystem connecting contractors, builders, and partners to help the delivery of better services to homeowners. The company’s Industry 4.0 approach will be extended, including the introduction of smart digital-operation and automation systems to the company’s production operations. 

  • Sustainable Development is aimed at creating a comfortable balance between business growth, a pleasant society and a clean environment. Sustainability will be a treasured value across SCG’s supply chains, and will be applied in the following three areas of business operations. (1) In product and service development, the company aims to increase by 30 per cent its self-certified SCG Green Choice products this year. (2) Manufacturing plants will “go green” with increased use of alternative energy, such as through installation of solar power systems and the use of electrically-driven forklifts. (3) In terms of its corporate social responsibility, SCG’s contributions to society and the environment will continue. Most recently, the company and its dealer stores have handed over various innovations for public use, including positive air-pressure rooms that were built with Smart Board Ultra Clean solution, CPAC BIM Medical Solutions, and bathroom mobile units.

 In 2021, SCG also plans to provide active support for self-development of its people, with a primary focus on skills needed in a modern-day context, such as digital competency, data analytics and service excellence. The company is continuously seeking partnerships with educational institutions to boost its capability to produce innovative products and solutions. At the same time, it continues to work closely with business partners to expand its expertise in online retail.

 “The key to business growth today is to obtain consumer and market insights and adapt to changes quickly,” Nithi said. “We believe that integrating digital technology and sustainability into every aspect of business, along with reinforcement of our strength in service solutions, will bring sustainable growth and development to our business, to society, and to the environment. We will continue to build a stronger business ecosystem and expand our open innovation partnerships to jointly develop new products for consumers. Based on this business plan, we expect to grow in line with the overall market and increase our profits from improved business efficiency and production costs.” 

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