Index Living banking on M&As, supermarkets

Index Living banking on M&As, supermarkets

Ms Kridchanok expects the property sector to see a recovery this year.

SET-listed furniture and home furnishing chain Index Living Mall (ILM) has diversified its business into supermarkets and aims to expand its boundaries via mergers and acquisitions (M&As).

Kridchanok Patamasatayasonthi, the company’s managing director, said the “Index Nextperience 2022” vision is to grow the business via four strategies: business diversification; collaborative marketing; customer experiences; and sustainable development.

As part of the diversification strategy, the company opened two “Seoul U Mart” Korean supermarkets at The Walk Kaset-Nawamin and Ratchapruek branches at the end of 2021.

Each 250-square-metre supermarket offers 1,000 Korean grocery items from instant noodles, seasoning sauces, alcohol drinks, frozen food to kitchen products. It plans to open 2-3 new supermarkets per year.

“We will diversify to new businesses that offer synergy with our core operation to create more business diversification and add more revenue,” she said.

In addition, the company will expand into downstream business, by producing some raw materials for furniture via its own factory or companies it is going to acquire. Index Living also plans to expand into midstream business by offering an interior design that will augment its current business.

The move will help enable the company to operate comprehensive businesses from upstream to downstream.

“2022 remains a challenging year for businesses owing to relentless Covid-19 outbreaks. Though the current situation is not as severe as in the past two years, we are still facing challenges to respond to changing consumer behaviour,” said Ms Kridchanok.

“Artificial intelligence and big data technology are employed to collect and analyse customer identity, preferences and shopping behaviour to present products and services in the personalised form to meet specific needs of clients.”

She expects the property sector to see a recovery this year and the government’s measures to stimulate the economy should spur housing demand and demand for furniture and home decoration.

Given such prospects, the company plans to open a new branch in Bangkok’s Lat Krabang area in the fourth quarter.

In a related development, the company recently teamed up with talk show host Vuthithorn “Woody” Milintachinda to launch Dreamia, a health-centric pillow from the US.

The company sees huge potential to grow pillow products because the data from the Super Poll survey on sleep among 1,109 people nationwide (as of September 2021) found 30-40% of the population, or about 19 million people, had insomnia.

Moreover, it will expand business abroad via a franchise basis in Asean, in countries such as Brunei, Vietnam and Indonesia.

Index Living is focusing on sustainable development by adopting low-carbon production techniques through the use of renewable energy.

All the firm’s branches will be equipped with solar photovoltaic panels by 2027, said Ms Kridchanok.

Index Living expects to increase revenue by 10% to 8.2 billion baht this year.