June 2013—Issue 2
Financial June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
Dear Readers, Welcome to our second issue of Broadsight, the monthly corporate magazine by the Broadgate Financial Group. Having read through this month’s articles, one common theme occurred to me – Trust and the importance of it. Upon reflection I’ve concluded trust can be obtained through the following formula: Trust = (Honesty + Openness) x Time = Transparency So what does this mean? We all have our own way to build trust so I’m not saying what I have illustrated is necessarily correct. However, it works for us here in Broadgate. I feel, personally, you can’t be truly honest without being open. Trust is something we grant to our employees automatically – we trust our employees to do the right thing and we trust our clients to make the right decisions. If trust is broken, it can be potentially damaging and irreparable. As I have learnt and what I try to instill is, trust is relatively easy to achieve (following the above formula) however, the hardest part is to maintain it! “If you don't have trust inside your company, then you can't transfer it to your customers.” -Roger Staubach On behalf of everyone at Broadgate and myself, our sincerest appreciation and support for your continued readership.
Simon Osborne Vice-President
June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
In this issue of BROADSIGHT,
All of us at Broadgate Financial are pleased to present you the second issue of our Corporate Magazine: BROADSIGHT.
Industry News Plantations
Industry News Advisory
Industry News Construction
We wanted to make it clear, comfortable to read and enjoyable. That’s why in each of the future issues you will find the same guidelines with: - The hottest news from the previous month along with upcoming important issues relating to the business world in ASEAN and beyond ; - A market report on the most important aspects of last month’s financial news provided by the Excelsior Worldwide Ltd company; - Industry news related to our services in Plantations, Construction and Advisory ; - A presentation of one new project running at Broadgate Financial ; - A Q&A specific to our three industries ; - And finally a presentation of an Individual Social Responsibility project run at Broadgate Financial ; We do hope you will enjoy this magazine as much as we did compiling it. If you have any questions or requests, please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Article on Corruption
June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
Laos issues bonds in the Thai market
The Lao government will raise funds through the Thai capital market for the first time by issuing 1.5 billion baht worth of bonds to institutional investors on Thursday.
Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok to undergo expansion The expansion is aimed at accommodating increasing passenger numbers and air traffic, and is estimated to cost THB625-million ($21.1 million). The design for the Phase 2 expansion is expected to take another 10 months to complete with the construction contractor to be finalised in March 2014. An agreement has already been signed by the airport authorities with MAA 103 Group for the design of the four-storey, 216,000-square-metre terminal building which is a part of Phase 2. The building will be located next to 28 aircraft parking spots connecting the south-end tunnel with passengertransport systems. The total cost of the project is estimated at THB72.2 billion baht ($243 million). The company also plans to incorporate smart cards and barcode technology to speed up its immigration services and reduce waiting times for passengers. Passengers will have an option of using their smart cards instead of passports which will take less time at immigration. The expansion is expected to be complete by 2016.
The three-year bonds will carry a coupon rate of 4.5%. Thailand is the most advanced capital market in the Mekong region and uses this strength to foster development of neighbouring capital markets. NiwatKanjanaphoomin, president of the Thai Bond Market Association, believes Laos will be able to attract foreign investors to its government bonds to be issued in the Thai capital market. http://www.bangkokpost.com/
China calls on North Korea to enter nuclear talks A personal envoy to North Korea's leader indicated Kim Jung Un was open to restarting nuclear disarmament talks, a move that came as China's leader delivered a blunt message to Pyongyang to return to the negotiating table, Chinese state-run media reported Friday. Kim's personal envoy, who was on a three-day visit to China, hand-delivered a letter from Kim to President Xi Jinping at a meeting in Beijing before returning to North Korea on Friday, according to state media. While the contents of the letter were not released by the government, the envoy -- ChoeRyong-hae -- told Chinese officials that his country is willing to "take positive actions to solve problems through dialogue, "the state-run China Daily reported.
Checking in for growth
Hilton Worldwide has set an ambitious target to open one new hotel a week in Asia in 2015 and make the region the group’s key player within the next few years. The surge in Chinese travel is pushing hotel expansion throughout Asia, says MrRinck. The company just celebrated the opening of its 100th property, the first DoubleTree by Hilton Sukhumvit in central Bangkok. It now has 170 properties under development, 90% of them managed by Hilton, said Martin Rinck, president for Asia Pacific of Hilton Worldwide. Four years ago, Hilton Worldwide had just 46 hotels in Asia Pacific. Last year, it signed 55 new deals to manage hotels in this region. “We aim to open 25 hotels this year and 35 in 2014. And we target to open one hotel a week in 2015. That means we will have 52 hotels under our brands in a year,” he said.
June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
News Feed – Market News
Market Report Excelsior Worldwide Limited is pleased to offer the following Market Commentary by Sebastien Le Van, head of R&D, to share his thoughts on global economic developments, market insights and other factors that may influence investment opportunities and strategies. Equity markets reached new highs in May but also increased volatility as mixed comments from the US Fed and Bank of Japan affected investor sentiment. The uncertainties regarding the slowing down of US stimulus and sufficient stimulus in Japan sent equity markets lower in recent weeks. On the macroeconomic front, the US economy continues its recovery while Japan shows timid signs of improvement. China’s economy is sputtering but is all part of a bigger picture and Europe remains stagnant. ASEAN economies again showed their resilience to the global slowdown. Key indicators in the US, such as housing and employment have continued to improve, suggesting the economy is gaining momentum. GDP came in slightly lower than forecast at 2.4% rather than 2.5% but it is not a major cause of concern. As stated above markets responded negatively at hints that
the Fed might be tapering its stimulus efforts as the economy improves and there is speculation that it could start by the end of the year.
Chinese data on the other hand has been sluggish as a whole. The government explains these numbers by the fact that it is restructuring its economy, shifting its dependence on export and investment growth to a domestic consumption and open economy. To achieve this China is ready to tolerate weaker growth at around 7% for a decade. The IMF which cut China’s outlook to 7.75% says these decisive reforms will put the country on a more sustainable path.
drop from its highest point, after the Bank of Japan sent mixed messages about its stimulus intentions. For many observers the correction was long overdue as the markets had risen too high and too fast. Nevertheless, many investors believe Japan is still a good investment as there is room for more growth. On the economic data front the numbers are improving with a 3.5% growth in the first quarter.
Elsewhere, central banks have been busy cutting interest rate in order to boost growth, notably Australia which cut interest rates to a record low 2.75%. The Euro Zone is still not showing signs of improvement with no growth since 2011 and alarming unemployment rates. Voices have been raised to reduce austerity and increase stimulus measures. Finally, ASEAN economies continue their expansion. Although some countries like Thailand and Indonesia had lower In Japan, the equity markets which had shown Junethan expected growth, 2013—BROADSIGHT bythey are well over 5%. signs of overheating went into a correction, 10% Philippines posted growth of 7.8% knocking
China from pole position in Asia. In the short term, markets should remain volatile. Bourses have been running high and any piece of negative news will be an excuse for profit taking. There is somewhat of an inverse relationship between positive macroeconomic news and market direction going on right now. Good indicators which should boost markets are viewed as a threat to the stimulus programs, especially in the US. Finally, further interest rate cuts across the globe could be expected as global inflation remains low which should give a lift to respective markets.
We remain moderately positive for the medium term. The announcements regarding Fed stimulus will have to be monitored closely. Any concrete sign of tapering should bring about volatility in the markets. However, this would also mean that the US economy is back on track and that can only be beneficial for global growth. The same can be said about Japan if they can get their economy going. The OECD has estimated higher global growth in 2014 if those two countries continue to improve. Chinese data also need to be watched as a major drop in figures would be a cause of
concern. As for Europe, it is expected to remain in a recession for another quarter, so any good news would be welcomed. In the long term we remain confident markets will move forward. Excelsior Worldwide Limited is an independent, active investment management firm specializing in MultiManager, Multi-Asset class offshore investment funds. The funds are domiciled in Guernsey and Mauritius. For further information on Excelsior funds please visit their website; www.excelsiorfunds.net
The information set out herein has been obtained from various sources and is by way of information only. The Broadgate Financial Group and Excelsior Worldwide Ltd can accept no liability of any sort in relation thereto and readers should obtain their own verification of any statement before making any 2013â€”BROADSIGHT decision which may have any financial or other impact. Neither the information nor the opinions herein constitute,June or are they to be construed by as, an offer or a solicitation of an offer to buy or sell investments.
Industry News Plantations
Economic Land Concessions in Cambodia Agriculture has always been a major issue in Cambodia as it is for any country. Twelve years ago the country needed to improve its agricultural performance towards achieving self-sufficiency for food. However, neither the government nor companies had the capital to develop agriculture. Moreover agriculture was suffering from low productivity, inadequate infrastructure and high vulnerability to the weather. The government decided to enact Economic Land Concessions. What are Economic Land Concessions?
What are the results?
Economic Land Concessions (ELCs) were initiated in 1990 in Cambodia and legally formalized in 2001 by the Cambodian Government. It is a long-term loan of land in Cambodia in order to develop industrial agriculture. ELCs cover a wide range of plantations, livestock and building sites (for agricultural purpose only). The size of lands may vary but don’t exceed 10,000 hectares per person (physical or legal). Since 2008, only the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) can legally grant ELCs. The MAFF is also obliged to list on a logbook all the ELCs (accessible on MAFF’s website).
More than ten years after the legal settlement of the ELCs, findings are mixed: during this period of time Cambodian growth has exceeded 8% per annum largely due to the substantial gain of efficiency in agriculture. Indeed, agriculture is still the main employers of people in the country and one of the largest contributors to GDP (37% in 2012 according to the World Bank). This was largely attributed to foreign direct investment. However, agriculture still suffers from weather change, the lack of infrastructure in the country
and globalized corruption. Worst still we can observe a drift from its original purpose. Indeed, according to Global Witness (an NGO fighting against natural resource related conflict) more than 400,000 Cambodian people have been evicted and 73% of arable land is leased to foreign companies. At Broadgate we give importance to these humanitarian issues and consider them when we help companies acquire land in Cambodia. Ethics is not just a posture it is also a way to do business. We value long partnership in order to develop benefits for our clients along with the country we help them to invest in. June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
Industry News Advisory
The EU: an example for ASEAN? Since 1967, the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) has established a supranational organization on the same basis as the European Union (created in 1957). Five countries were at the origins: Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Philippines. Later Brunei, Viet Nam, Laos, Myanmar and Cambodia joined the community composing nowadays of 10 countries. But at a time when the European Union is experiencing a political and economic identity crisis after the implementation of a common currency and increased political integration, ASEAN is patiently building an economical giant which will be a direct competitor to China and India in the coming years. Indeed, by 2015 ASEAN aims to achieve full economic integration creating a single market that will allow the free flow of goods, services and capital (economic and human). This is quite similar to the Schengen agreement of the EU in 1992. With 10 countries compared to 27, ASEAN is trying to build the same model of regionalisation with fewer countries and therefore has a higher chance to succeed in the long-term. Moreover, ASEAN and the EU have been built for the same purpose. Thereby, ASEAN and the EU are at least comparable. We will find the same hope for peace and security, the safeguarding of national
independence against interference from external actors and the research for economic prosperity and competitiveness in a globalizing world. Motivated by the same desire to influence international debates in front of the major powers, we can extend the comparison to the currency. On March 1979, the EU implemented the European Currency Unit, a basket of European currency, which attempted to limit the fluctuations of currencies. This ECU has been replaced in 1999 by the Euro.
In 2005, on the impulsion of Japan, an Asia Currency Unit was created. It is the weighted average of ASEAN +3 (Japan, China and Korea) +3 (Australia, New-Zealand and India). This has led to a stabilization of each countryâ€™s currency, which is showed by Eiji Ogawa and Junko Shimizu in their research for the Asian Bank Development Institute. June 2013â€”BROADSIGHT by
what happens in Europe and contextualizes borrowed concepts such as the Asian Currency Unit, which has proven their potential viability, even with several countries.
But even with so many similarities, EU and ASEAN are very different. It is just pretence to try to look for other common points, their respective compositions are opposite. While democracy is a prerequisite to enter the EU (for example the entry of Spain, Portugal or Greece after dictatorship), the ASEAN members have politically a lot less in common. Myanmar and Singapore share little political similarity. In terms of wealth this area is also a paradox, Singapore is one of the richest countries in terms of GDP per persona ($60,900 for 2012 ranked as 6th) while Cambodia and Laos (respectively: $2,400 ranked 184th $3000 ranked 184th) and are among the poorest countries in the world. Globally their economic structure is totally different: ASEAN is mainly dependent on exportation to grow, while gross domestic product in the EU is lead by household consumption. With this context it would be quite impossible for ASEAN to transpose the European rules and policies. That is why ASEAN takes its time, observes
Attempting to forecast is always risky. Nevertheless, by observing carefully recent events in the EU and ASEAN, a line is drawn and it is not so obvious that the ASEAN will tend to become an Asian EU. In fact it is nearly impossible to run an integrated area of too many languages, cultures and religious diversity. The future of ASEAN will mainly cover agreements on economic cooperation because these do not exert politics and religion, but help countries to remain close. An example in Asia is the tension between Thailand and Malaysia. However, these two countries are still doing business together. On the other hand, to be credible as an entity on the international scene, they will have to act together and in concert before taking a decision, something that Europe failed to do (e.g: War in Iraq in 2003). However, even with its failures, the EU will remain a model to follow. How is it possible twelve years after the most deadly war in history that enemy countries decide to unite to build one of the most peaceful and wealthy regions in the world?
June 2013â€”BROADSIGHT by
ASEF Board of Governors meeting in Singapore, May 2012.
Thereby, both the EU and ASEAN understand that joining forces will help to set up a different balance of power. This is a response to the supremacy of US or the coming supremacy of China. These organizations have a role to play among the nations. In ASEAN, some countries have a particular role, for example Singapore, the gateway to Asia for western countries, or petroleum producing Brunei, a country that ensures a constant supply of oil. But one has a more implicit role: the Kingdom of Thailand. Indeed, Thailand is the heart of the ASEAN and the link between the member countries. Being the founding member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Thailand has a proactive role in the implementation of the unique market in 2015. With its central location in Southeast Asia, we can expect Thailand to become a hub in this area of the world.
By 2015, companies based in Thailand will have an advantage of being located in one of the biggest markets in the world. The Broadgate Financial Group has understood this unique situation as an opportunity to invest in. Firstly, by providing expert advice in plantation development in Southeast Asia. Also by diversifying its consultancy activities, resulting in being the most diverse corporate consultancy firm in South East Asia. “A new growth force is coming in Asia,”Changyong Rhee chef economist of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) when talking about ASEAN. Pierre-Louis Vouteau June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
Industry News Construction
The city of Bangkok goes Green The new Bangkok city plan, effective from May 15th 2013, encourages the construction of “green” buildings. Whether you are a private individual planning to have your new house built in Thailand or a builder willing to take advantage of this brand new law, this article might interest you! The city of Bangkok has approved, earlier this month, the final draft of the new city plan named “Bangkok, the Green City”. This project’s aim is to promote environment-friendly buildings in line with the guidelines of the Thai Green Building Institute (TGBI). In order to establish new standards in the construction industry, the TGBI came up with TREES - the Thai’s Rating of Energy and Environment Sustainability – which assesses the “greenness” of a building. It covers eight key construction and environmental factors: building management, site and landscape, water conservation, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, indoor environmental quality, environmental protection and Green innovation. Each of these factors corresponds to a specific requisition from the cabinet like the wastewater treatment system, reduction of CO2 released in the atmosphere, etc. After submitting the building project to the TREES test, it will be attributed a score depending on the mentioned criteria and representing the efficiency of the building in terms of sustainability.
If a building fulfills those eight requirements, the developer will be allowed to increase the floor-area ratios over and above the current limits. The Floor Area Ratio (FAR) is the total surface of a building divided by the total surface of the lot. It measures the density of an area. Even if the reward can benefit the constructor, the average cost will be increased by 20 to 30% in the short term. However, they achieve marked long-term savings in the form of reduced energy costs. Living in an eco-friendly house or building can also benefit a person in an economical way like considerably reducing energy usage, saving water and regulating temperature. This results in decreasing the cost of house maintenance. Developers will now have to compare the benefits from increasing floorarea ratios with the higher construction costs before deciding whether the green route is more profitable and feasible for a particular project. We, at Broadgate Construction, can help you with our new green product: LiteCast. Broadgate Construction is the exclusive global marketing partner for Easy Panel™ Construction (EPC) which partially prefabricated construction material using sandwich panel technology. LiteCast is a lightweight alternative to precast concrete panels and has been tested, certified and patented in Thailand. If you want more information, please contact us directly onour website. June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
Juliette Vidailhet & Mathieu Testa
Finally, the speed. Thanks to a reduced mass of concrete, LiteCast’s curing time is
significantly shortened. Delivery time can thus be positively affected. Moreover, less storage space will be required in the factory.
LiteCast Consequently to the new Bangkok “green” city plan covered in the previous article, it appears that the construction industry will be strongly affected in the future. Let us introduce the LiteCast panels technology, Broadgate’s solution to match the new eco-standards promoted by the Thai Green Building Institute.
The Minerva project consists of a major property development project requested by a large, family owned, construction conglomerate in Thailand. The 3D-sandwich technology has been used for many years in USA and Europe, but it has recently been introduced into South East Asia by Broadgate Construction through its manufacturing partner, Easy Panel Construction Co., Ltd. The client’s requirements were for a hybrid combining the strengths of standard precast concrete panels together with the lightweight and insulation properties of the Easy Panel 3D sandwich technology, as well as needing a short completion date and cost-effective materials. This is due to wanting to comply with the new “Green Bangkok” city plan
LiteCast is a partially prefabricated construction material using sandwich panel technology. It consists in a 3D high tensile steel wire and fire retardant expanded polystyrene (EPS) embedded in concrete. As such, it is a lightweight
released on May15th, 2013. In order to achieve the successful on-time delivery, several parties are involved both within Broadgate and together with our partner companies in developing the end product that satisfactorily meets all demands.
alternative to precast concrete panels.
What are the advantages of LiteCast over precast concrete panels? First, the Mathieu Testa
weight: approximately 50% lighter than standard precast concrete panels. It enables a faster construction time as well as a costs reduction onsite: a smaller crane can be used to handle LiteCast, and for a shorter amount of time. Logistics also works out cheaper given the product’s lightweight. Insulation: the polystyrene core and double layer concrete enable better noise and thermal insulation properties. An efficient conservation of inside temperature consequently reduces usage of air conditioning, allowing energy (and therefore money) savings.
June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
Meet Ken Golby This month, we had the opportunity to meet Ken Golby, CEO of Excelsior Worldwide Limited, a fund management company created in 2005, based in Bahamas. Ken Golby started in the finance industry in 1982. He then moved from consultant to a position of Managing Director of a national independent brokerage. After some 10 successful years onshore, Ken moved to Dubai with offshore company Finexco Ltd before finally coming to Bangkok, Thailand. Q: What attracted you to South East Asia and Thailand in particular? What are the opportunities here? A: South East Asia is a growing market. This is especially true for Thailand in terms of growth and opportunities. I moved here 10 years ago and it has drastically changed from an underdeveloped economy to now, an emerging economy. Nowadays it is a key market that attracts a lot of people for many different reasons. First, the unemployment rate in Thailand is really low, less than 1%! In comparison, Germany has the lowest unemployment rate within the European Union and it only scores 5.9%. Moreover, Thailand is a
hub in Southeast Asia attracting every year more and more foreign investment. Finally, we have to mention the Thai lifestyle a mix between Europe and Asia that is really comfortable: the life is affordable, the weather here is always warm, the cuisine delightful and the culture “jai dee” which means warm heart. This makes Thailand a great place for retirement. As a result more and more expatriates have come to live here over the past few years and therefore the market needs have increased. That’s what attracted me here as have many other western businessmen and entrepreneurs.
Ken Golby, CEO of Excelsior Worldwide Limited How different is running a company in Asia from Europe? To be honest, I would say that generally managing a business in Asia is much easier than in Europe mainly regarding employment. Of course, we can mention the lower labor costs as well as the regulations being a little more flexible but, overall, I am thinking about the cultural differences. Asian countries have been a lot influenced by Confucianism, which is an ethical and June 2013—BROADSIGHT by philosophical system.
Thus, respect to elderly people and non-confrontational behavior are two key points in the Asian culture that drastically change the way of doing business here compared to Europe. Regarding the Hofstede cultural analysis, we can see that Thailand as an example is a high Power Distance country, scoring 64 instead of United Kingdom that scored 35. This means that Thai society is hierarchical. Therefore the drawbacks of such differences can be a difficulty for Asian people to work within a flat structure and being managed by a younger person.
Q: One of our core values at Broadgate Financial is transparency. How important is transparency in your industry? A: Transparency is an important issue for us. Not only because of a legal obligation but because we truly believe in transparency to establish the best relations possible with our clients. We apply very strict rules to the products we invest in. They have to be entirely transparent and to provide us everything needed in order to take a decision such as a detailed fact sheet, fee disclosure and even more important: proof of good corporate governance. We need to be able to inform our clients on everything. On the other hand we expect our clients and all of the stakeholders to have the same transparency. It is our day-to-day work where we have to be prudent and take very seriously transparency issues. We prefer to lose a client because of a lack of transparency than doing something we severely condemn. “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and 5 minutes to ruin it” – Warren Buffet Pierre-Louis Vouteau & Bénédicte Ciotti
Excelsior Worldwide Limited is an independent, active investment management firm specializing in Multi-Manager, Multi-Asset class offshore investment funds. The funds are domiciled in Guernsey and Mauritius. June 2013—BROADSIGHT by For further information on Excelsior funds please visit their website; www.excelsiorfunds.net
Dao De Xin Xi, a Thai elderly people practice
Kitvaris, known as Num in Broadgate Financial, practices it every day at 5am; he says: “It is a real habit that helps me feel better and I couldn’t start a day without it! Dao De Xin Xi is not only about exercises but also mediation and prayer for world peace.” Being a regular practitioner, he is as well fully involved in the Dao De Xin Xi Foundation, as an event organizer in Bangkok: “I can be asked to organize events or just give a hand. It depends on the location and the size of the event but at least every month, happenings are going on.”
Dao De Xin Xi (DDXX) was created in Bangkok in 1998. It is a shortened version of Tai Chi in order to make it more accessible for elderly people. Kitvaris is our Finance Manager at Broadgate Financial and not only practicing Dao De Xin Xi, he is as well greatly involved in the DDXX International Foundation, being an event organizer. Tai Chi is a Chinese practice combining exercises and meditation. It consists of a series of individual movements (at least 108!) linked together in a continuous manner that flows smoothly from one movement to another. Therefore it can be really hard to do Tai Chi for elderly people and some shortened versions have been developed for them. Dao De Xin Xi is the Thai version of one. Dao De Xin Xi uses 9 selected movements as well as meditation believed to have health benefits for 9 physiological systems in the body such as the cardiovascular system, digestive system, respiratory system etc. A 2011 study showed that elderly people who practiced it 3 times per week for 12 weeks presented a significant improvement in their static and dynamic balances and their quality of life as well as physical and psychological health and social relationships. The Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Phramongkutklao Hospital has even adopted Dao De Xin Xi exercise for patients since 2006.
Num, doing some Dao De Xin Xi
The last event that Num organized was the Songkran Party, in April. It gathered more than 200 people for celebrating traditionally the Thai New Year’s Eve (no water guns here!) by showing respect to elderly people around speeches, traditional ceremony, dances and activities such as baking and sewing. In September 2013, the annual Dao De Xin Xi meeting will be held in Kanchanaburi gathering 1500 people. To learn more about Dao De Xin Xi, you can visit their website or watch the following video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uCxtBpYhWK8. June 2013—BROADSIGHT by Bénédicte Ciotti
Corruption: Business Ethics How much we all here in Broadgate love Thailand and what it has to offer, you have to agree it is not the most ethical country to do business. Although there are far worse “unethical” countries, especially in this region of the world, Thailand does not perform really well globally. Corruption (the act of fraudulent behavior) is a serious problem ranking 88 in the world in the 2012 corruption perception index (meaning there are 87 less corrupt countries than Thailand).
Recently, I attended a seminar about achieving success for business codes of ethics in an unethical environment. The organizers of this seminar and I were surprised by the little attention this seminar attracted concluding with the relatively few people that showed up. A reason given for this absence was the topic would not have been of direct personal interest for business people – that is simply money making. As David Lyman (Chairman and Chief Values Officer of Tilleke&Gibbins) explained, first there is a positive relation between age and how much one cares. The more you mature, the more you start caring about ethics. However, at a certain point, this relation changes negative: the older you become the less you are interested in ethics. Only at this moment this turning point is when people start caring less differs between people.
On the field of human rights, Thailand does not score extremely badly but still there is a lot of room for improvement. Especially in the Southern regions dominated by a Muslim population, a lot of human rights are being violated. Luckily in the field of environmental protection Thailand scores quite well.. Although Thailand’s economic growth has come with significant environmental costs, Thailand has put considerable effort into conservation which ranks the Kingdom at 34th place in 2012 Yale’s environmental performance index.
June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
While at first it would seem not directly of interest for companies to act ethically, as our plantation support officer Max Schuetzeberg mentioned in his report on the Importance of Investment in Sustainable Development for plantations, reputational factors and the public demand to publish sustainable reports might force companies to pay more attention to their ethics of business.
In some way: assuring they are ethically responsible, that they care. We are absolutely dedicated to operating legally and transparently, reflecting Broadgate Advisory as one of the relatively few investment research companies in Thailand that is fully licensed by the Ministry of Finance and regulated by the Thai Securities and Exchange Commission.
In a relatively “unethical” and less regulated environment as Thailand is, this remains hard however and especially for smaller companies to which less of the public’s attention has been focused. They enjoy less monitoring and less reputational risk of bad behavior, since institutions and the rule of law are not developed as much. There is less incentive to act responsibly and therefore to perhaps opt for the easy way. How does this apply to Broadgate? Out of our three core values under which we operate, two deal with ethics: Sustainability and Transparency. How does this appear in Broadgate’s operations? It is very easy to put something down like this and most companies’ core values will look similar
While we will never deny that also Broadgate is founded with the intention to make money, this is encompassed with the commitment to do this in an ethically responsible and sustainable way. There has been a lot of negative attention around (palm) plantations:
appropriation of local possessions, environmental destruction and suppression of local people are examples of this. While there is no strong presence of the rule of law in a country like Cambodia, where Broadgate Plantations is predominantly active, we are committed not to disadvantage the local Khmer people and assist them in benefitting from our projects as well. For one of our latest projects in Cambodia, we choose land that has been virtually unused – the few local people will be compensated or employed – and where the environmental impact will be as minimal as possible (land that already has been stripped years ago to minimize the destruction of any new forest). This is not just out of a commercial belief, but also out of a personal belief in doing right for the nations citizens. “My biggest problem with modernity may lie in the growing separation of the ethical and the legal”, Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Bed of Procrustes: Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms Nathan Koekoek
June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
Broadgate Consultants (Thailand) Ltd. 2811, Level 28, The Offices atCentral World, 999/9Rama 1 Road, Patumwan, Bangkok 10330 Thailand Telephone: +66 2264 5706 Fax: +66 2646 1004 Email: email@example.com
Authors contributing in this issue: Bénédicte Ciotti Nathan Koekoek Sebastien Le Van Simon Osborne Mathieu Testa Juliette Vidailhet Pierre-Louis Vouteau
Many thanks to : http://broadgateadvisory.com/ http://www.broadgateconstruction.net/ http://www.broadgateplantations.com/
The views and opinions expressed in this magazine are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official position of The Broadgate Financial Group. June 2013—BROADSIGHT by
It is with great pleasure to introduce our second edition of Broadsight. The corporate monthly magazine from the Broadgate Financial Group.