a publication of CanCham Thailand
Apr-May-Jun 2019 Issue
Dear CanCham Members:
CanCham held its Annual General Meeting on March 20th - I am honoured to have been re-elected to serve as CanCham President for the next 12 months. We are fortunate to have such an active and engaged board of returning directors which include: Derek van Pelt (Vice President), Caroline Kwan (Vice President), Dan McKay (Treasurer), David Beckstead (Secretary), Ron Livingston (past-President), John Casella (past-President), Surachit Chanovan, Lawrence Cordes, Dean Outerson, Sunny Patel and Natasak Rodjanapiches. We also welcome Rajiv Parrab, the sole newcomer to the CanCham board of directors – Rajiv has many years of corporate and board level experience and we look forward to his insights and contributions. Board participation is voluntary – and I thank all of our board members and advisors for the dedication they bring to champion causes, organize events and build the CanCham profile in the Thai, Canadian and international business communities. The first quarter of the year was a busy one for CanCham, which saw record attendance at both the Crystal Ball economic outlook event and Women in Leadership forum. Kudos to respective Chairs, Derek van Pelt and Caroline Kwan for masterful executions. In the first quarter, CanCham also organized a perennial favourite, The Great Canadian Barbeque, hosted by Ambassador Pottie at the Official Residence, and The Leadership in Energy Innovation symposium, chaired by David Beckstead and sponsored by his firm Chandler MHM. Annual renewals are now in full swing, and I hope that you or your company will continue to support CanCham through membership, annual partnerships, event sponsorships and event attendance. It is only through the active engagement of our members that CanCham can continue to evolve and thrive. I thank you in advance for your support. We are also reaching out to the Thai-Canadian Alumni organization in order to attract more Thai professionals with linkages to Canada. We are hopeful that 2019 will see greater engagement with this important constituency. Summer will soon be upon us and we are gearing up for Canada Day “Summer Fest” which will be held on June 15th – I look forward to serving you a Caesar or two. Until then, John Stevens President | CanCham Thailand
CanCham Board Members & Advisors
2017-2018 CanCham Thailand Board Members Patron: H.E. Donica Pottie, Ambassador of Canada to Thailand Executive Board: John Stevens, President Derek van Pelt, Vice President Caroline Kwan, Vice President Dan McKay, Treasurer David Beckstead, Secretary Board of Directors: John Casella Surachit Chanovan Lawrence Cordes Ron Livingston Dean Outerson Rajiv Parrab Sunny Patel Natasak Rodjanapiches Embassy Representative Michel Belanger Advisors: Peter Baines Yvonne Chin Joni Simpson Marisha Shibuya Executive Director: Rose Swagemakers Publication Design:
Publisher / Advertising
Finn Balslev, Marketing Director Tel: +66(0) 2943-7166 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
CanCham Thailand 139 Pan Road, Sethiwan Tower 9th floor, Bangkok 10500 Tel: +66(0) 2266-6085-6 Fax: +66(0) 2266-6087 Email: email@example.com Website: www.canchamthailand.org
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S MESSAGE Dear Members & Partners, A growing sector of business in Thailand, we are dedicating this issue of Voyageur to the Health and Wellness Industry. The Global Wellness Institute (GWI), considered the leading global research and educational resource for the global wellness industry, estimates that the wellness tourism is growing more than twice as fast as general tourism with a global market valued at USD 639 billion. For Thailand, the GWI has valued its wellness tourism industry at USD 12 billion which has placed Thailand in the top twenty wellness tourism destination markets despite only accounting for 1.88% of the global total. In the Asia Pacific region, Thailand has placed 4th as a wellness tourism market after China, Japan and India. Thailand’s has differentiated itself from other wellness destinations as it is uniquely known for its high-quality executive checkups and has leveraged its advanced medical industries and wellness sectors to cross-promote wellness and medical tourism. According to the GWI, this allows Thailand to “tap into overlapping opportunities, such as: stressed out executives who want a medical checkup, detox, meditation, life coaching while on vacation; patients recovering from minor procedures (and their families), as well as travelers seeking integrative medicine and related wellness modalities to address chronic health or mental wellness issues”. For an example, please refer to one of our newest CanCham members, Vitallife Wellness Clinic @ Bumrungrad Hospital and they will be happy to outline the services they provide in this arena (see page 22-23). I would say our Chamber finds itself in a state of “wellness” and positive development at the moment. At our recent Annual General Meeting we reported a growth in membership of 60% in 2018 (51 new members), as well as a 60% growth in annual partnerships (6 new partners). All of our events have grown in attendance and key annual events such as our very successful Women in Leadership event in February, where we saw over 350 very engaged participants, has segmented itself as a mustattend event that puts the important values of Canada at the forefront. We hope you will continue to be part of our thriving Thai-Canadian community in 2019! We at CanCham Thailand have a great management team and a wonderful newly elected Board of Directors to support you in all of your business endeavours. Rose Swagemakers Executive Director | CanCham Thailand
CANCHAM THAILAND’S 2019-2020 BOARD MEMBERS
Top row, from left: Rajiv Parrab, Dean Outerson, Derek van Pelt, Dan McKay, Natasak Rodjanapiches. Bottom row, from left: John Casella, David Beckstead, Surachit “Art” Chanonvan, John Stevens, Caroline Kwan & Ron Livingston. Missing: Lawrence Cordes & Sunny Patel.
At the recent CanCham Thailand AGM, held at the Radisson Blu Plaza in late March, the new CanCham Board of Directors was elected. All CanCham board members are returning from last year, but we are adding one new board member; Rajiv Parrab. The Stonelotus team of John Stevens, Derek van Pelt and Dan McKay return to their positions of president, vice-president and treasurer, respectively. There was a slight change in the Executive Board as Caroline Kwan replaces David Beckstead as vice-president and David moves to secretary. New board member Rajiv Parrab grew up in the Don Mills area of Toronto and graduated in Engineering from Waterloo and then worked primarily in Toronto. He moved to Australia in the late 1995. From 2000 onwards his roles and responsibilities have been primarily as a CEO, MD, Regional CEO including M&A, Private Equity. He also served on both Public and Private Boards. Having been involved in businesses throughout SE Asia for about 15+ years, he enjoyed and started to understand the area better. As such about three years ago, he settled in Thailand and focused on building and investing in e-businesses. The business is based out of Ubon Ratchathani (in the NE) and Surat Thani (in the South). “My role and responsibility on the CanCham Thailand Board will be to first and foremost represent the CanCham members. At the board level, I would like to be of value by using my experience and skills in enhancing the association by helping build the brand and in participating in the activities of the association,” Rajiv said. Other returning board members are past presidents John Casella and Ron Livingston, past secretary Lawrence Cordes, Dean Outerson, Surachit “Art” Chanonvan, Sunny Patel and Natasak Rodjanapiches.
PREVIOUS EVENTS RECAP
CanCham’s New Board and Beer Extravaganza
The Great Canadian BBQ
CanCham’s AGM was held at the Radisson Blue Plaza Bangkok on March 20, 2019 and included a keynote address by Mr. Tom Waller on the Thai Film industry. Tom is one of Thailand’s most influential filmmakers with almost 20 years of experience. The audience even got a sneak peak into his upcoming film “The Cave” which recounts the story of the heroic global efforts used to save a Thai boy soccer team trapped in a cave.
On January 26th, H.E. Ambassador Pottie graciously opened the Official Residence once again for CanCham’s Great Canadian BBQ. This family friendly event featured a variety of tasty Canadian craft beer by Drink Wise Co., Ltd., live music, juicy burgers and other grilled fare of the grill by Bistro 33 and raffle prizes donated by Now Travel Asia. Midway through the BBQ, guests enjoyed listening to three very talented students from KIS International School (www.kis.ac.th), the Gold sponsor for this event. These wonderful young people pleased the crowd with their singing and guitar ensemble. The event was of course not complete without an exciting raffle draw after which the guests rounded off the event by enjoying a lovely night on the rooftop of SMALLS for a lively after party.
CanCham Thailand, Drink Wise Co., Ltd. and Crave Beverage teamed up to bring its guests a Canadian Craft Beer Extravaganza. The event took place at Brewski Craft Beer Roof Top Bar after CanCham Thailand’s AGM at the Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel. Guests had the opportunity to sample a great selection of over 20 Craft beers from Canadian breweries all the while enjoying CanCham’s first Canuck Connections Networking event of 2019.
BOMBARDIER TRANSPORTATION AND CANCHAM THAILAND
RENEW SUSTAINABILITY PARTNERSHIP FOR 2019 INTRODUCING A SERIES OF HEALTH & WELLNESS TALKS IN COOPERATION WITH BUMRUNGRAD HOSPITAL
From left: Dr. Worakij Chalermskulrat, Chief of the Critical Care Unit from Bumrungrad Hospital; Gregory Enjalbert, Vice-President Asia-Pacific, Rail Control Solutions, Bombardier Thailand; Udo Kim, Senior Manager, Expatriate Business Development, Bumrungrad Hospital; Rose Swagemakers, CanCham Thailand’s Executive Director.
CanCham Thailand and Bombardier Transportation have renewed their Sustainability Partnership agreement for 2019. The cooperation will continue to focus on promoting activities in areas of common interest such as workplace equality, innovation, education and leadership development.
Gregory Enjalbert, Managing Director Thailand and Vice President, Rail Control Solutions Asia Pacific, Bombardier Transportation, added, “With environment, education and entrepreneurship at the core of Bombardier’s values, our partnership with CanCam Thailand is an important channel to drive activities for sustainable business. It is very exciting to see our joint programme expanding, including our new focus on health and wellbeing, promoting issues that are important for Bombardier and Thailand’s future.”
In addition, a series of Health and Wellness talks will be held at Bombardier Transportation’s Bangkok site in 2019. Organized by CanCham in cooperation with Bumrungrad Hospital, the talks will cover topics such as workplace wellbeing, women’s health and stress management.
These activities will fall under the banner of a Sustainability and Smart Business Platform which serves as the focal point for organizations to engage and collaborate on topics including workplace equality, innovation and education. The first initiative under this banner saw Bombardier participating as a key partner in CanCham Thailand’s Women in Leadership Forum on February 13 in Bangkok.
John Stevens, President of CanCham commented, “We continue to see a strong strategic alignment between Bombardier and CanCham’s values. Issues such as empowering women, leadership training and coaching as well as health and wellness are core to our Sustainability and Smart Business platform, and we look forward to our member companies and partner organizations joining our calendar of initiatives throughout 2019.”
Since establishing its Bangkok site in 1997, Bombardier has grown its highly-skilled local team of over 620 employees at its Regional Hub and Engineering Centre working on rail signalling, vehicle and system integration projects for Asia Pacific and globally.
Dr. Worakij Chalermskulrat explaining the AQI
Air Quality Index (AQI)
MITIGATING EFFECTS OF AIR POLLUTION On March 29, a new alliance between Bombardier Transportation Signal Ltd - Thailand, Bumrungrad International and CanCham Thailand saw the first quarterly corporate “Health & Wellness Talk” of 2019 by Dr. Worakij Chalermskulrat, Chief of the Critical Care Unit from Bumrungrad.
There are various sources of PM2.5 including forest fires, woodburning stoves, diesel engines, cars and buses, non-road vehicles, agriculture burning, and industry. The masks that you see most people wearing really don’t do any good at all. If you really want to protect yourself against air pollution purchase N95 or P100 respirators approved by the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health (NIOSH).
The topic “Measures for Prevention and Protection from Harmful Effects Caused by Air Pollution” was discussed at Bombardier’s Bangkok office. Two back-to back hourly information sessions saw engaged participants gain information about Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5, filters/masks, health risks and prevention mechanisms. Many were eager to gain expert advice on this important issue affecting us all in this region.
So how do we combat high PM2.5 levels? Solutions include: building safe & affordable public transport systems and pedestrian and cycle-friendly networks; invest in energy-efficient power generation; improve domestic, industry & municipal waste management; make greener & more compact cities with energy efficient buildings: reduce agricultural waste incineration, forest fires & certain agro-forestry activities; provide universal access to clean affordable fuels and technologies for cooking, heating & lighting.
The speaker, Dr. Worakij, has a very easy-going and approachable style and his topic on the day, air pollution, is something that affects us all so he had the attention of both audiences. There was no scaremongering, he just explained what PM 2.5 was and how best to combat high levels of it.
Also, portable indoor air purification systems with highefficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters will reduce particulate matter concentrations and might be worthwhile for those with sensitivities.
He said that according to the World Health Organization PM 2.5 is the fifth leading risk factor for death in the world, accounting for 4.2 million deaths (7.6% of total global deaths) and 103 million disability adjusted life years lost.
There is such a wide range of air pollution levels in Thailand. Those up north in the Chiang Mai area, where slash-and burn agriculture is very prevalent, may have an Air Quality Index of 600, while those in Krabi on the same day may have an AQI of only 30, so a lot of the risk posed by air pollution depends on where you live.
He went on to explain that airborne particulate matter (PM2.5) is a complex chemical mixture consisting of varying combinations of extremely small solid particles and liquid droplets that var greatly in shape, size and chemical concentration. It can be made up of very different materials such as metals, soils, soot and dust that ae suspended in the air that we breathe.
SUPPLEMENTS DESIGNED TO BOOST BRAIN FUNCTION At the end of every game you want to feel confident that you’ve given your absolute best. In a world where distances are measured in micrometers and speeds recorded to thousandths of a second, every advantage counts. It doesn’t matter if your game is on the field or in the boardroom, second place is frequently first loser. Canadian Dr. Shawn Watson (PhD, Neurophysiology), with a team of international scientists and formulators, has developed a pair of supplements designed to restore and boost brain function, which will soon be available in Thailand. Dr. Watson’s story began in the laboratory where he and his colleagues discovered that a group of natural compounds could assist in the repair and protection of brain lipids in humans. Since the human brain is composed of up to 60% lipids, protection of this vital organ against the ravages of oxidation, inflammation and fatigue is crucial. Modern life has stacked the deck against optimal brain performance with pollution, stress, inadequate sleep and so on, but there is hope for those who are seeking peak performance and long-term brain fitness. In order to make the move from the laboratory to the real world, Dr. Watson established Senescence Life Sciences in Singapore four years ago. The challenge was to not only continue investigating the science behind what his team had discovered, but also to design and run clinical trials to prove positive improvements in cognitive performance, to begin the long process of formulation and to find a manufacturer of the highest caliber to produce the final product. The result of these efforts is the introduction of two new products specifically constructed to ensure that brain lipids are protected, perform at peak levels of performance and recover from stress far more efficiently than they otherwise would. The key ingredient in the Senescence products is a proprietary formulation of vitamins and botanicals trademarked as NeuroSHIELD™. Manufactured in Canada by a state-of-the-art facility, it is blended into a pair of products suitable for adults of all ages. The formulation works with Omega 3 to maximize results.
Two new products specifically constructed to ensure that brain lipids are protected, perform at peak levels of performance and recover from stress far more efficiently than they otherwise would.
The first product, EDGETM, optimizes for protection and is aimed at people under 55 year of age. Since cognitive performance starts to decline as early as your 30’s, and is especially exacerbated by pollution and lifestyle choices, this product is for those who want to maintain the cognitive advantage they have for as long as possible. The second product ELEVATETM, has been specifically formulated to rejuvenate an aging brain and is a particularly suitable for those above the age of 55. Both products have shown significant clinical results in terms of alertness, spatial mental accuracy, mental agility and quality of sleep. In addition, both products are stimulant free and will be sold in Thailand both online and over the counter through leading pharmacies. The introduction of EDGETM and ELEVATETM into Thailand are thanks to the dedicated staff of Thai wellness group Peak BioLabs. Founded last year as a passion project by long-time CanCham member firm Stonelotus Ventures, Peak is a leading developer, marketer and distributor of supplements in fitness, sports recovery and protein for the ASEAN market. Stonelotus Ventures Managing Partner and CanCham President John Stevens said, about the introduction to the EDGETM and ELEVATETM products to the Thai market: “We are thrilled to be working with Dr. Shawn Watson to introduce this world-changing product to the Thai consumer. After a tremendous amount of research into the clinical results presented by the Senescence team, we feel confident that these products will have far-reaching benefits to our customers. A true game-changer for cognitive decline in the region.” EDGETM and ELEVATETM will be available through the Peak website (www.peakbiolabs.com), starting in late May, 2019.
Dr. Shawn Watson, PhD, Neurophysiology
CANCHAM’S CRYSTAL BALL PROGNOSTICATORS
CanCham proudly presented the “Multi-Chamber Crystal Ball Economic Outlook & Business Luncheon – the year ahead” on January 16, 2019 at the Landmark Bangkok Hotel.
To lead the discussion on the global economy for 2019, focusing on macro trends in China, EU, US, & Japan, Andrew Stotz took the stage as the event’s first speaker. Mr. Stotz is the founder and current CEO of A. Stotz Investment Research (ASIR) and a member of the Advisory Board at Thammasat University’s Business School.
This CanCham flagship event saw five leaders in their respective fields look into their crystal balls to provide their perspective and outlook on the economic, regulatory, political, digital, and investment landscapes for the year ahead.
Andrew predicted the US stock market is set for a fall with peaking profits as the net profit margin is at its highest peak since 1990. Factor in high valuation—the EV/EBITDA has only been higher in the US before the dot-com bubble burst, and he perceives a dip as inevitable.
Paul Gambles, Managing Director, MBMG Group, and a former Crystal Ball panelist, was the moderator, and the panelists were: Andrew Stotz, President of CFA Society Thailand and an award-winning equity analyst; Steven Ladd, Lead Customer Engagement and Commerce & Consulting, Ogilvy; Audray Souche, Partner & Thailand Managing Director, DFDL; Virot Ali, Lecturer in International Politics, Thammasat University; and Dr. Soraphol Tulayasathien, Senior Executive Vice President, The Stock Exchange of Thailand.
He also noted that the global pressure is rising on small and mediumsized companies due to peaking net profit margins for large and medium companies; falling efficiency due to malinvestment; and the crash conversion cycle shows vulnerability to a credit crunch and/or an economic slowdown. Thailand has consistently been recognized for its open marketoriented economy and its willingness to accept FDI. After the 1997 Asian financial crisis, the Thai government entered an IMFsponsored economic reform program which was mainly designed to promote a more transparent and competitive climate for foreign investors. Thailand still favours policies for open investment and continues to support its economic reform process. Ms Audray Souche was next up on the podium, telling us what foreign investors can expect regarding legal/regulatory developments and foreign investment conditions for Thailand in 2019.
The global economy was optimistic at the start of 2018, this confidence was partly explained by an upswing in global trade and manufacturing through 2017. However, business confidence gradually fell as trade and industrial production slowed. This loss of momentum is partly explained by the implementation of tariffs by major economies and the responding retaliatory measures taken by others. Most notably, the trade tensions between China and the United States. Despite these tensions, the US economy expanded rapidly in 2018 and the US dollar has appreciated against most other currencies for 2018. Nevertheless, some emerging market economies have come under stress due to this general appreciation of the US dollar.
Audray is a Partner and the Country Managing Director of DFDL Thailand and has been working in the region since 2004. As Managing Director of DFDL Thailand, she manages DFDL team members in Bangkok, Phuket, and Samui.
As we went into the Crystal Ball forum uncertainty surrounded the date of when the Election Commission would hold the next general election. Dr. Virot Ali, a return panelist from the 2017 Crystal Ball in 2017, was on hand to give us his thoughts, and accurately predicted the election would be held on the 24th of March. A highly distinguished lecturer in International Politics from Thammasat University. Dr. Virot earned his PhD in Political Science and International Studies (POLSIS) from the School of Government and Society at the University of Birmingham in England. Dr. Virot was prescient enough to table a number of different election outcomes, but as we went to press the election results had yet to be officially recognized.
She focused on four themes: Elections (What are the effects on the business environment; Steady macro environment; the impacts on Public-Private Partnership projects); Green Impulse (Amended Power Development Plan; Introduction of net metering elements; Independent Solar Rooftop Program); US-China Trade War (Take advantage of the tension to attract investment relocations; Maintaining relationships with both sides; Maintaining a subtle and balanced role; and Post-2018 Continuation (Merger Control Notification under the Trade Competition Act; Data Protection Act; Private Asset Management Act).
The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) 2018 market report showed that the SET Index ended 2018 at 1,563.88 points which was down 10.8 percent from end-2017. Dr. Soraphol Tulayasathien, the SET Senior Executive Vice President said that the SET index in 2018 was weighed down by external factors, while Thai economic fundamentals remained robust and the growth outpaced a year earlier. However, in contrast to the decline of the SET Index for 2018, the average daily trading value of the SET and the Market for Alternative Investment (MAI) in 2018 surged 15.1 percent to THB 57.67 billion (USD 1.75 billion).
To give further insight on the topic of digital transformation and customer experience, Steven Ladd was up next. As a Customer Experience professional at Ogilvy and he earned his Master of Business Administration from the National University of Singapore. Furthermore, Mr. Ladd is a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for public service in Canada. Digital transformation is driving companies to adjust their business models and adapt to the new reality of the market. This change is not being driven by the companies, rather it is being driven by the customers. In today’s market, customers expect relevant content in relation to what they are doing at anytime, anywhere and on the device of their choosing. Today’s businesses must embrace technology to bring forth an unparalleled customer experience in order to keep up with this new kind of “consistentlyconnected” customer.
SET has continuously grown in the time of the rapidly changing environment of the capital market. Thailand has become the most liquid capital market and the largest fund-raising venue in ASEAN since 2013. CanCham was honoured to have Dr. Soraphol on the panel this year to lead the discussion on investing trends in Thailand. In October, SET appointed him as Senior Executive Vice President to oversee strategy, international relations and research.
MICRO-ALGAE CAN HELP MOVE THE WORLD TO SUSTAINABILITY Whapow is a small food-tech company with an exponential vision. Interestingly, Ingo Puhl, one of the co-founders, is not a foodie but has dedicated his career to fight global warming. He moved to Thailand 12 years ago with the ambition of accelerating the renewable energy transformation in Southeast Asia. Five years ago, he became interested in the climate footprint of the food industry discovering micro-algae as the single best and possibly massively disruptive solution to move the needle on the climate impact of the food industry. Micro-algae are single cell organisms who are the original building blocks of life. Their ultimate purpose became to fuel more complex forms of life. They exist in total abundance, they are designed to grow and replicate with the highest possible efficiency, they contain everything that more complex life forms need to run (amino acids, minerals, vitamins), which then in turn, through evolutionary progress become the feed-stock of even more complex forms of life. If you go back far enough in any food chain you will get to single-cell organisms. They are the “machines” that convert non-organic inputs and energy from the sun into bio-available organic compounds. In fact, the photosynthetic cyanobacteria - which is what spirulina is - are arguably the most successful bacteria, and changed the early atmosphere of the earth by oxygenating it. In other words: single cell organisms such as spirulina are the original fuel of life. The ecological disaster created by our current food system is caused by so much inefficiency in processing basic nutrients that are already present in very simple life forms via a set of organisms and conversion/extraction processes that are part of our food chain into the food products we consume, creating waste products in the process and using massive resources.
Whapow’s goal is to go back to the original fuel of life and inject it directly into the foods we consume (in a way that is acceptable and convenient), and - when available in large enough quantities - also into animal feed, thus cutting out 80% of the waste/ inefficiency associated with the animal feed chain. Ingo explains that spirulina/cyanobacteria are an original fuel of all life, a modest, invisible superhero organism played a key role in oxygenating our planet and atmosphere, thus enabling life, creating organic compounds at scale, thereby enabling the evolution of more complex forms of life with abundant availability and zero waste in production. Ingo says, “The world is in dire need of a superhero - we are making the planet unlivable again, our atmosphere, oceans and lands need another clean-up, it is time for this superhero to come back.”
Look at the success of plant-based meats. e.g., Impossible Burger, Vegan Butcher Shop. They managed to take an iconic dish - a burger - fast, convenience food, not really healthy, and turn it into a sustainability champion. By comparison, microalgae can outperform even those great burger alternatives by another order of magnitude in terms of GHG emissions and by at least two orders of magnitude in relation to water consumption.
Whapow’s ambition is to create a mass movement powered by chefs and the food services industry for the adoption of microalgae as a key ingredient in super-delicious, nutritious and convenient food items, positioning it as a key ingredient in iconic mainstream dishes. The starting point: shakes/smoothies and frozen grab-n-go snacks, meeting the criteria of convenience, potential to be a daily food & beverage option. The challenge is to drive demand for micro-algae to create scale economics on production: the company believes that if it can grow production from currently 20 ktons a year to 500 ktons, the per kg costs will be able to displace less sustainable protein sources in a wide range of new food applications, including animal feed and when that is achieved the carbon footprint (as well as water use) associated with eating meat will drop by 80% so that even those who do not want to give up meat can now do so leaving a massively lower resource footprint. Whapow is currently available at Villa Markets (in the premium ice cream, and frozen food section), online at (honestbee.co.th) and just recently launched the “Super Bowl” in collaboration with Dressed Thailand. The company is interested in new partnerships with retail, hospitality and food service firms.
What Chef Massimo Bottura and chefs around the world did for Parmesan cheese to save the city of Modena after the earthquake in 2012, Whapow would like to do with micro-algae and to save the world from global warming, massive deforestation and overfishing (www.upworthy.com/this-world-renowned-chefsaved-his-towns-economy-with-cheese-and-rice) www.whapow.com firstname.lastname@example.org
HELP MAKE-A-WISH THAILAND MAKE DREAMS COME TRUE Make-A-Wish was founded in Phoenix, Arizona in 1980. It all started with a single wish when a group of caring volunteers helped a 7-year-old boy with leukaemia named Christopher James Greicius fulfil his dream of becoming a police officer. His mother, several friends and a group of police officers, with the cooperation of the Arizona Department of Public Safety, granted his wish with a custom-made uniform, helmet, badge, and helicopter ride! His wish was granted and he experienced hope, strength and joy during his battle with cancer. After the wish, those involved were inspired and eager to bring that same hope, strength and joy they saw as a result of Chris’s wish to more children. And so, the Make-A-Wish Foundation was born.
Research shows, and physicians agree, wishes can help improve a child’s quality of life and produce better health outcomes. And if the impossible can happen once, kids can believe in their ability to live with or even overcome their illnesses. Make-A-Wish grants wishes to positively impact long-term health results. The following are just a few of the children that Make-A-Wish Thailand has touched by granting their wishes: • Belle, 16, suffering from inflammatory bowel disease, met famous Thai rock star, Toon Bodyslam, giving Belle courage to fight her critical illness and pursue her dream of becoming a doctor. • Tee, 9, suffering from heart disease and pulmonary hypertension, wanted to go to Dreamworld; his dream came true, giving Tee strength to keep battling his disease. • August, 4, suffering from neuroblastoma, wanted to go to the beach, and see the sea for the very first time. She said it was the best trip she’d ever been on. • Belle, 5, suffering from an extrarenal rhabdoid tumour, wanted to see snow and her dream came true when she went to Snow Town at Dreamworld. “I love being in the cold air so much!” she said. • View, 14, suffering from juvenile dermatomyositis, wanted to go to Mae
In 1993, Make-A-Wish International was officially formed to serve five countries outside the U.S. - and now helps to serve children outside the United States in more than 50 countries on five continents through its 41 affiliates. Make-A-Wish Thailand, established in 2012, is an affiliate of Make-A-Wish International. With the help of generous donors and over 40,000 volunteers in more than 50 countries, Make-A-Wish, one of the world’s leading children’s charities, has granted nearly 450,000 wishes worldwide since 1980. In 2015, Make-A-Wish Israel conducted a study to measure how wish-granting experiences influence medical outcomes of children with critical illnesses. The results revealed wishes not only increased hope, they also improved the children’s physical and emotional health. The wishes made the impossible, possible – helping children replace fear with confidence, sadness with joy and anxiety with hope. A wish is something that gives kids the opportunity to look outside their illnesses- it restores a sense of childhood back to the child and normalcy back to the family. “It is possible that wishing enabled these children to dream about that seemed unobtainable, out of reach, and thus created an experience of achieving the impossible” researchers wrote.
Many of these dreams aren’t very expensive and can be arranged for Bt30,000 or less, including in-kind donations. They include pony-riding and entering a singing contest. But it is imperative that the doctors caring for the children must agree to the wish.
August saw the beach for the very first time
Molchaya Techapaibul is the CEO of Make-A-Wish Thailand. She’s putting her heart and soul into this endeavour, but she needs our help. Khun Molchaya stresses that while it is true that some of the children have terminal diseases and won’t get better, many of the children though sick have a very good chance at recovery and realizing their dreams and wishes gives them the courage and inspiration to keep fighting. Molchaya and her three staff members try to grant five wishes a month. But how does Make-A-Wish choose the children it decides to help? Make-A-Wish accepts referrals from: children being treated for a critical illness; medical professionals (typically a doctor, nurse, social worker or child-life specialist); parents or legal guardians and family members with detailed knowledge of the child’s current medical condition.
Belle was inspired meeting Toon Bodyslam
To be eligible, children must meet these criteria at the time of referral: be diagnosed with a critical illness, e.g., a progressive, degenerative or malignant condition that is placing the child’s life in jeopardy; be between 3 and 18 years old; and have not received a wish from another wish-granting organization. If you want to adopt a wish or volunteer (and Make-A-Wish needs volunteers) contact Molchaya (email@example.com) as you will need to be vetted to make sure you can help because some of the children’s wishes are very serious and sensitivity is needed. Thai-language skills are an asset, but not essential as there are many things you can do to help including staging fundraising drives and assisting in making wishes come true. In Singapore, some companies have even taken to adopting wishes themselves. View got her wish to visit Mae Hong Son
Belle had a chance to experience cold air, ice and snow
Tee’s dream came true when he was able to go to Dream World
WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP –
“DEFINING THE NEXT GENERATION”
Three hundred and forty people jammed into the grand ballroom of the Renaissance Bangkok Ratchaprasong Hotel on February 13th for CanCham’s Women in Leadership “Defining the Next Generation” event, and you had a feeling that it would have been double that if the ballroom had the capacity.
Before handing off to Master of Ceremonies Yvonne Chin, Caroline shared a remark from one of her colleagues noting that, “being a woman in business these days is not easy: you must think like a man, work like a horse, act like a lady, and look like a young girl,” By way of introduction, Yvonne is the Canadian Commercial Corporation’s Asia Regional Director and a co-founder of WIL. She is currently posted in Bangkok where she works closely with Canadian Embassies and High Commissions in the region. The concept of WIL first came about during a 2016 Canada Day celebration. One year later, Ms. Chin became a co-founder in bringing this idea into reality which resulted in a sold-out inaugural event. WIL attendance grew exponentially in 2018 and has become a cornerstone CanCham event ever since.
MBMG’s Caroline Kwan, CanCham vice-president, and the Chairperson for the conference, did a fabulous job of organizing and spearheading the event. She opened the conference with introductory comments saying that Canada leads by example in gender equality and women’s empowerment. After introducing all the dignitaries in attendance, Caroline invited H.E, Donica Pottie, Canada’s Ambassador to Thailand, Laos and Cambodia to the stage to give her welcoming remarks. Ambassador Pottie reminded all those in attendance that although a lot of good work has been done regarding women’s empowerment “no country has achieved full equality for women.”
Yvonne introduced the first speaker Unilever Thailand’s CEO Canadian Rob Candelino, the only male speaker of the event. Rob said he was honoured to represent men, his country and Unilever at WiL. He admitted to be a little nervous, “being the only dude on stage” but noted that that single biggest catalyst towards moving to a fair and just society is giving women an equal voice at the table and stressed that Unilever continually strives to make that happen, being gender-balanced at management level.
H.E, Diedrah Kelly, Canada’s Ambassador to ASEAN followed, reminding all that Thailand is the chair of the ASEAN 2019. She stressed how important it is to promote women to positions of leadership in areas of innovation, education, government and business.
Cindy Sirinya Bishop was up next. An actress, supermodel (Miss Thailand World 1996), TV host and activist based in Bangkok. Recently, Cindy has added the role of women’s right activist to her resume as founder of the campaign and hashtag #donttellmehowtodress, which has been called Thailand’s answer to the #MeToo movement. #DontTellMeHowToDress is a catalyst to ending sexual misconduct, assault and violence against women, dedicated to inspiring, educating, engaging and working cooperatively with communities, businesses and governments, whilst empowering women, all for positive and lasting change. Cindy discussed empowering themes in her talk entitled: “Finding Your Own Value to Lead the Next Generation”.
After the featured speakers a few of the sponsors of the event took to the stage including CanCham board member Sunny Patel, the founder and MD of Trends Digital. Sunny shared that growing up in Canada taught him that the appreciation and beauty of different cultures and traditions. “We all deserve the same respect, equal rights, and freedom as human beings. Diversity, gender equality and inclusiveness are the secret sauce, the DNA, which has helped my company grow. It’s very important that as business leaders, we make it clear that discrimination in the workplace and outside is not acceptable. A diverse and inclusive culture is essential for the growth and innovation that all our companies and society needs. Supporting inclusiveness makes good business sense, it’s good for society and it’s the right thing to do.”
Cindy struck a chord with the audience when she shared her feelings of self doubt, not belonging and low self esteem noting that growing up in Pattaya (the child of an American father and mixed Thai/Eurasian mother) as a blue-eyed fair-haired girl she was continually ostracized and strove to fit in worried about what she should be, what she should say and how she should behave especially after being introduced into a world of unhealthy and unrealistic stereotypes of beauty and success, where what you looked like was far more important than who you were or what you had to say.
Yuwanne Chulya, the Head of Finance at Bombardier Thailand, followed Sunny and she noted that inclusivity and diversity was paramount at Bombardier as 40 percent of their management team was female. Khun Yuwanne’s parting comment was “empower yourself, if you believe in yourself, you can do whatever you want.” Next up was Andrea Howton, the COO of Vitalife Scientific Wellness who gave valuable insights into maintaining your health while focusing on a busy work schedule, time management and multitasking.
Cindy shared the following tips with the audience: a) don’t worry too much about what other people think; b) stop trying to be perfect; c) find your unique selling point; d) back up your authenticity with discipline; e) lead by example “walk the walk”.
Next was a panel discussion led by Yvonne Chin who fielded questions from the audience for the featured speakers. The conference wrapped up with two breakout sessions led by Cindy Sirinya Bishop and Inês Caldeira.
Next up was April Srivikorn, the Head of Industry at Google Thailand. Prior to joining Google, April was the Chief Strategy Officer and Executive Vice President at Central Pattana Plc., where she oversaw the company’s overall growth strategy and was also leading international business development for the company. She spoke about, “Resilience as a Leader and Learning to Swerve”.
Summarizing the event, Cindy Sirinya Bishop, said, “It was truly inspiring and empowering, especially as I was the only one of the four who didn’t come from the corporate world at all, but rather have had a long career as a freelance artist in the entertainment industry. “I chose to speak about how important it is to own your authenticity, and how I finally came to be able to truly understand what that means only recently. The ‘leadership’ part comes after you are able to accept and own who you truly are and then use your voice and purpose to then empower the next generation to do the same. I feel as I am only starting out on this journey of empowering through example but so far it has been extremely inspirational and rewarding. It’s through events like these that we are all able to connect, learn from each other and become inspired to become the best version of ourselves.”
The last featured speaker was Inês Caldeira, the Managing Director of L’Oréal Thailand. Over the course of her career with L’Oréal, Inês has been responsible for three international assignments, played a development role at headquarters, and directed operations in Spain, one of the toughest and most challenging economies. The focus of her talk was “I’m Worth It”.
An important spin-off from WIL is WE-Can, a peer-support group, organized by WIL co-founder, Joni Simpson that provides networking, coaching and a supportive environment to women entrepreneurs running micro-or-small enterprises and who have been in business for at least a year. The initiative is a collaboration between CanCham and SPACES. For more information, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
LIVING A BALANCED LIFE
Do you struggle with any of these symptoms?
Work-life balance. Eating a balanced diet. Balancing the books. All of life is a balancing act. The human condition instinctively craves equilibrium in an increasingly busy world. Even with structure, discipline and planning, a true sense of well-being is elusive if your internal biochemistry is unbalanced. Could your hormones be undermining your best efforts?
Fatigue and insomnia Memory loss Weight gain or difficulty losing weight Loss of muscle mass or strength Hair and skin changes Sexual dysfunction or low libido Anxiety Lethargy Irritability
Hormones are potent chemical messengers that are created by glands in the endocrine system. At every age, these messengers regulate our bodily functions, growth, metabolism, sexual function, and more. When in proper balance, hormones help our bodies thrive. When out of balance, even if only a small amount, our well-being is disrupted.
If you answered yes to one or more, your hormones may be responsible. Of course, hormones naturally change as you move through life’s stages, but birthdays are not the only cause of hormonal imbalances. There are also lifestyle influences and other physical conditions that disturb your biochemical equilibrium. The endocrine system can be disrupted by:
Many people assume that hormonal imbalances only affect middle-aged women. We all know someone who has struggled with “personal summers” and other miserable conditions of the menopausal body and mind. Female menopause is one of the most vivid examples of hormonal changes. What most people do not realize is that the potency of hormones impact multiple biological systems, in both genders, and across the adult timeline, not just middle-age.
Chronic or extreme stress Type 1 or 2 Diabetes Poor nutrition Sedentary lifestyle Over/under-active thyroid Being overweight Exposure to environmental toxins
Easiest decision of your day - get a hormone screening test. Via a simple blood test, a typical hormone screening test checks the following: Thyroid hormones. Produced by the thyroid gland, they help in controlling the metabolism of our body. Further, these hormones regulate weight, and determine energy levels, internal body temperature, skin, hair etc. Growth hormones. Secreted by the pituitary gland, they stimulate growth, cell reproduction, cell regeneration, and boost metabolism. Insulin. Produced by the pancreas, insulin allows the cells in the muscles, fat and liver to absorb glucose that is in the blood. The glucose serves as energy to these cells, or it can be converted into fat when needed. Insulin also affects other metabolic processes, such as the breakdown of fat or protein. In a healthy individual, insulin production and release is a tightly regulated process, allowing the body to balance its metabolic needs. Adrenal Hormones. Located at the top of each kidney, the adrenal glands produce hormones that help the body control blood sugar, burn protein and fat, react to stressors like a major illness or injury, and regulate blood pressure. Cortisol, known as the “stress” hormone is one of them. Too much cortisol leads to increased appetite, weight gain in the abdominal area, disrupted sleep and anxiety. Too little cortisol may impact inflammatory responses and metabolism. Sex Hormones. Testosterone, estrogen, progesterone, and others are found at some level in both men and women. They are secreted by multiple glands in the endocrine system to help the body stay balanced and function optimally. An imbalance of sex hormones in both men and women is usually attributed to aging or environmental factors. Rebalancing those male and female sex hormones can restore feelings of well-being, energy levels, sex drive and sexual pleasure. Sleep quality is improved, memory is sharpened, and loss of muscle mass and bone density are reversed.
Libby Heath, VitalLife Brand Manager, has spent more than 30 years in the Health and Wellness industry. If you want to shape a more youthful life, contact her at email@example.com - Photo by Melinda Ruck
Consider the impact of chronic sleep deprivation and insomnia. Research shows that not getting enough sleep, or getting poorquality sleep, increases the risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes. It is also known that restorative rest enhances optimal hormone production, and that optimal hormone levels produce quality sleep. Which is the chicken, which is the egg? The proverbial problem of cause and effect applies here. So what does a savvy, curious, protector of one’s own health do?
Once results are determined, you can work with your physician to determine the optimal treatment program that will restore your hormonal equilibrium. It may be hormone replacement therapy, nutritional supplements, lifestyle modifications or some combination of all three. Even if no action is taken, you will be doing yourself a favor by establishing a hormonal measurement benchmark. If symptoms worsen in the future, you will know what deviations have occurred by comparing against the benchmark. With knowledge comes power, and the power to restore a sense of energetic youth, can be yours.
HIKING BACK IN TIME By Derek van Pelt
The West Coast Trail is an iconic piece of Canadian shore and a definite to-do on many Canadians’ bucket list. Originally known as the Dominion Lifesaving Trail, and established in the early 20th Century as a way to support the rescue efforts of shipwrecked survivors along the southwest edge of Vancouver Island, the West Coast Trail has a legendary and storied history. This past autumn, CanCham President John Stevens and Vice President Derek van Pelt took the opportunity to trek the trail with two other long-term Bangkok expats in order to test their mettle and achieve the dream of so many Canadians. To make a long story short, throughout the process as many as 12 people expressed an interest in joining, but in the end, as deadlines approached and flight bookings needed to be confirmed the team was whittled down to four souls. In the process of preparing, several late-night meetings were held in order to plan who would bring what, to discuss equipment choices and to plan other logistics of the expedition itself. An early morning phone call was made to a Vancouver-based guide in order to solicit advice, dried food was ordered from a Canmorebased outfitter and many hours were spent looking at the goods for sale on the Mountain Equipment Co-op website. At the same time, we reached out to former CanCham board member and treasurer Michael Howard to let him know that a team would be headed his way. Within a minute of hitting SEND on the email an enthusiastic reply was in his inbox demanding that the group spend at least a night at Michael and Julie Howard’s Vancouver Island based bed and breakfast – East Meets West. Buoyed by the prospects of seeing old friends and finally getting underway on the trail, the final weeks before the trip passed quickly. All four participants made their way to Victoria separately, finally reconvening the day before the trail reservation had been made. With a final “farewell” dinner prepared by John’s mother in our bellies, we proceeded up the coast towards East Meets West and the West Coast Trail southern trailhead at Port Renfrew just an hour or two beyond it.
There were three things that made it obvious that the Michael and Julie run East Meets West. The first was the friendly dog that bounded over to see us on arrival, the second was the impeccable (and familiar, to those who knew them in Bangkok) furnishings collected over two decades in Asia and the third was the familiar blend of gregarious storytelling and laughter emanating from the kitchen. The team made one last check of all the gear by spreading it out willy-nilly on the lawn beside the house, packed everything up and weighed each of the bags. Some of us (being sturdier than others) had heavier packs, but on average the bags weighed in at around 23kg. After a boisterous evening of food, reminiscing, wine and belly laughs with the Howards, it was off to bed to prepare for an early departure to Port Renfrew in order to make the mandatory morning briefing in time to head out into the Pacific Rim National Park that day.
The mandatory briefing ended up being more interesting that we might have expected, given its compulsory nature. We were told what to do when encountering bears, how to ford rivers safely, where wasps’ nests might be found, what would happen in case of earthquake/tsunami, how to read the tide charts we were all issued with and (most disappointingly for many) that the burger shack known as Chez Monique was closed for the season. After completing the briefing and paying another fee for entrance into the national park, we repositioned the car about 500m down the road, slid into our packs and set off to get on the boat that would take us the short trip across the Gordon River to the start of the trail.
We settled in easily to a slow rhythm and fortunately the weather cooperated for us for the first few days. As we intended to be in the forest for seven days, we were carrying everything we knew we’d need, and a few things we thought we might enjoy having (chief among these luxuries were a trio of folding chairs and a portable espresso maker). In retrospect I think we’d all leave the luxuries behind if we did the trip again. It was late in that first day that the aches started to appear and we all remembered that we weren’t the spring chickens we still believed ourselves to be. I think we all felt it differently, some in the hips, others the shoulders or the knees. But it was in that first long slog to our first campsite that the enormity of the task ahead of us started to sink in. The West Coast Trail itself is only 75km in length, but it traverses an untamed and rugged landscape in old growth rainforest. The weather can turn quickly and the most beautiful morning can easily turn into a chilling downpour by midday. To navigate the trail doesn’t require much in the way of navigation skills, but it requires some planning and strategy to ensure that goals are met on time and that supplies are sufficient to finish the expedition. Approximately 6,000 hiking permits are issued each year for the trail and we were told that 60 to 100 hikers every year fail to complete the task and need to be evacuated. At the beginning of the trip we were fortunate to have extremely beautiful weather, which was much appreciated by us because the southern part of the trail is more rugged and has many more ladders and bridges to deal with than the northern portions of the trail. In the rain, the trail, bridges and ladders are as slippery as glass and one bad move could leave you sprawled out in a gully or worse.
On the third day, the weather turned on us. Our emotions swung from disappointment that the bad weather hadn’t lasted to thankfulness that we were getting the “real” West Coast Trail experience, to despair at the cold wetness that dogged us, to a steely determination to push forward to each day’s objective.
We were fortunate enough to see a bear, and even more fortunate that we were able to observe from a distance. On the first morning we woke up to see animal tracks throughout the campsite, but none of the animals had bothered to disturb us personally. Other wildlife we encountered (discounting the other wild-eyed hikers on the trail) included deer, seals and an eagle. After working out the kinks in our process on night one and waking up sore, but optimistic, the next few days on the trail progressed smoothly, if not quickly. We were able to cover a maximum of three kilometers an hour most of the time and every mile marker counting down towards the 0 at the end of the trail was cause for a small celebration. Out of the exhaustion came a spirit of unity and camaraderie that will certainly be recalled fondly by all of us for years to come. We slowly got accustomed to being sore, tired, sandy, blistered, thirsty, and wet.
The rules of the trail say that you can camp anywhere that isn’t reservation land. This leaves a fair bit of space, but there are a few designated camping spots along the route that feature outhouses and (importantly) bear boxes. A bear box is simply a steel box with latches on it that we were instructed to keep all of our food in at night while staying in the camps. If we elected to stay somewhere other than a designated camp, we were instructed to hang all of our food from a tree in order to ensure that it was out of reach of even the most resourceful of ursine forest dwellers.
Out of the exhaustion came a spirit of unity and camaraderie that will certainly be recalled fondly by all of us for years to come.
On our last day, we had to cross two fast moving streams in quick succession. Almost every step on the 75km journey had to be carefully watched to avoid a slip or twist of the ankle that could quickly bring the adventure to an end, but fording the streams required an even greater level of focus, mindfulness and concentration. We unbuckled our packs so we could quickly shed them if dragged down into the water and tepidly started sidestepping across the raging torrent. There were a few tense moments and one or two slip ups, but all of us made it through in one piece to regroup on the other side.
That’s where we met the Australian group that had almost lost two of their crew to the sea as they were swept out into the surf. The Australians were proceeding north to south, as we swapped stories around a large campfire, we realized that we were in the home stretch and how thankful we could be for having had the opportunity to not only attack this legendary piece of Canadiana, but also to beat it. I don’t think any of us can really be sure how nice the hotel that we stayed in on the night that we finished the trail in Bamfield really was, but I can tell you that it felt like the Ritz Carleton. I do know for sure that for the evening I could not recall ever enjoying softer sheets, plumper pillows or a more supportive mattress. Would we do it again? Possibly. Should you do it as soon as is practical? Absolutely.
SENSE, A ROSEWOOD SPA
As visitors arrive at Rosewood Bangkok, on Ploenchit Road in Bangkok’s prime central business and retail district, they not only step into an ultra-luxurious property, but one steeped in Thailand’s rich heritage and customs, in keeping with the A Sense of PlaceÆ philosophy of Rosewood Hotels & Resorts®. Thai tradition envelops the entrance to the two high-rise structures, whose form – reminiscent of two hands pressed together -- is inspired by the graceful wai gesture of greeting. A holistic sense of peace is created from the moment of arrival.
As guests are taken on a cultural and spiritual journey, planning ahead will maximize their opportunity to bathe in the spiritual sense of Thai healing available. To soothe the aches and pains associated with the stress travel places on the body, guests from afar will appreciate the jetlag revival treatment, Rub Kwan, which is a traditional Thai therapy the northern and northeastern Thai people offer to visitors who have arrived after a long journey. Herbs renowned for improving blood circulation and aiding in the reduction of swelling -- such as ginger root, phlai root, mint leaves, licorice, cinnamon and sea salt -- are used in a decadent foot soak to begin the treatment. Next is the traditional practice of immersing the hands in rock salt and namprung to cleanse and refresh, followed by a hand and foot scrub using Thai rose, pandan and michelia longifolia mixed with sea salt to ensure the layers of stress and tension begin melting away. The body is now in a relaxed state, prepared beautifully for the targeted massage to loosen joints, shoulders, neck and back. Adding a personalized facial to this jetlag treatment allows the dehydrated skin to be replenished and rejuvenated. Guests leave feeling centered and relaxed.
Guests will have selected their favorite from a choice of 159 guestrooms which include a sky pool studio with large terrace and private plunge pool, or one of the three houses with large outdoor terrace and plunge pool, set privately amongst the Deluxe, Executive, Premier and Grand Studios and Suites. After perusing the menus of the hotel’s four restaurants and bars, their senses will be excited at the thought of what will be on offer throughout their stay. From this indulgent vantage point, guests are tantalized in anticipation of an exquisite spa experience. Sense, A Rosewood Spa is a sanctuary providing peace and tranquility in its healing offerings. It offers guests the chance to rest and reenergize within the dedicated haven, offering space to disconnect from the outside world and focus on personal wellness. Guests unwind in one of the three individual rooms or two double rooms where state-of-the-art, results-oriented treatments are a focus within a spa menu filled with restorative therapies honoring Thailand’s Lost Remedies. The infusion of herbal healing in Sense treatments stems from a culture as far back as the first to 13th centuries -- a time before the Sukothai, Lanna and Ayutthaya Kingdoms, the predecessors of the Thailand we know today.
Manicures, pedicures and blowouts can be enjoyed in a separate nail studio and hair salon to make for an easy transition from spa treatment to elegant finishing touches. From head to toe, guests are assured their well-being is of upmost importance.
Whether guests require detoxification, a targeted pigmentation treatment, intense hydration or the ultimate in anti-aging facials, expert therapists make certain a glowing complexion and complete rejuvenation are received. Even guests with sensitive skin can be comforted by the skincare range used -- EviDenS de Beauté -- which combines the unsurpassed expertise of both Japanese and French beauty knowledge.
Gentlemen need not feel left out. A specially designed spa menu, tailored for males, provides specific treatments to target concerns. Even little ones can be taken care of in the nail salon with a gentle manicure created especially for those precious, tiny hands. Both Mother and Daughter and Father and Son packages have been created to enhance every family getaway.
Body treatments have been specially designed for physical and mental well-being. The journey begins with senses enhanced by the beneficial ingredients used in the luxurious Maison Caulières product range. Healing offerings include relaxing or energizing massage, scrubs for hand, feet or body, the use of hot or cold compresses, and an extensive range of massage from traditional or ancient Thai and Himalayan Salt Stone to an invigorating pressure point scalp massage. Combinations are personalized and ensure the guest receives the bespoke treatment their wellness craves. Decadence is encapsulated into each and every treatment, from the soothing milk bath with lavender, rosewood and cedarwood, to the protein-rich jasmine rice scrub, to the aloe vera and honey body wrap – during each, the body is gently coerced into complete relaxation.
Thailand is known all over the globe as home to the world’s top spas. With a dedication to well-being, Sense, A Rosewood Spa ensures guests leave feeling refreshed, relaxed and rejuvenated. Every breath fills the body with the fragrance of healing and wellness. With every touch from expert therapists, tension is eased, aches are forgotten, and skin is intensely hydrated and enriched. The mind, body and soul are made fresh to face the world once more.
For visitors looking to absorb a not-to-be-missed spiritual experience with their spa treatment, the Sense Journey Krung Thep Heritage is a unique offering in which a Rosewood Bangkok concierge is their personal escort. The journey begins at Wat Pho, where guests learn the history of traditional Thai herbs and their therapeutic and medicinal uses in ancient Thai medicine. They are then transported by boat down the Chao Praya river to Wat Arun, where they receive a Buddhist blessing. Filled with the stillness and calm that comes from Buddhist practice, guests return to Sense, A Rosewood Spa for a blissfully indulgent 90-minute Signature Sense of Ploen massage. Advance booking of at least one day is required for this experience.
CONTACT INFO Rosewood Bangkok. 1041/38 Ploenchit Road, Lumpini, Pathumwan, Bangkok, 10330 telephone +66 2 080 0088 mobile +66 86 792 1876 facsimile +66 2 080 0089 rosewoodhotels.com
THAILAND’S UPDATED POWER DEVELOPMENT PLAN
On Wednesday March 6th, at the So Sofitel Bangkok, CanCham members received a glimpse into Thailand’s Updated Power Development Plan, “a roadmap to 2037.”
“The revised PDP focuses much more on regional development initiatives rather than simply looking at power development on a nation-wide scale. The Ministry of Energy seems intent on ensuring that power plants are distributed throughout the country in order to respond to increases in demand locally.”
David Beckstead, CanCham board member and counsel at Chandler MHM, was the host for the event and did a superb job. After some introductory remarks, he introduced Dr. Veerapat Kiatfuengfoo, the Director of the Power Policy Bureau at the Energy Policy and Planning Office, for Thailand’s Ministry of Energy.
Dr Veerapat and his team are not only responsible for the preparation of Thailand’s power development plan, but also the electricity price structure and measures implemented to promote competition in the electricity industry. Dr Veerapat is also a member of the working group designing the Thailand Integrated Energy Blueprint or the 20-year Energy Plan that is comprised of five long-term energy plans: the Power Development Plan, the Energy Efficiency Plan, the Alternative Energy Development Plan, the Oil Plan and the Gas Plan.
Dr. Veerapat went on to explain that the government’s Power Development Plan is the cornerstone of the Minister of Energy’s overall policy and the strategy for the development of energy markets in Thailand moving forward. “From Dr. Veerapat’s speech,” David said, “we learned that the Thai government is anticipating huge increases in demand over the coming two decades. The revised PDP envisions most of the additional energy coming from natural gas and solar, along with energy efficiency mechanisms and energy storage.
The event was sponsored by Chandler MHM Limited (“CMHM”), originally formed as Chandler and Thong-ek Law Offices Ltd. in 1974, the firm integrated its practice with Mori Hamada & Matsumoto to create Chandler MHM Limited (“CMHM”) in January 2017. As a leading, independent law firm in Thailand, CMHM provides local and international clients with the highest quality service across a broad range of practice areas. www.chandlermhm.com
“The government is planning to roll out a pilot project to allow private individuals to sell surplus electricity generated from rooftop solar back to the transmission grid.
(Please note that since the PDP has not yet been officially released or formally approved by the Cabinet, Dr. Veerapat’s speech gave the audience a preview of this upcoming major government policy.)
THE CENTERPIECE OF DIGITAL PR Consumers select your product because you stand out, not because you blend in. If your brand is indistinguishable from others in your sector; if your company lacks its own unique voice and personality; if your identity is faceless and corporate – then how can you build a sense of connection and loyalty between yourself and your customers? The strongest and best-loved brands are the ones that use digital marketing to explain why their audience should care about them. This form of storytelling involves several essential ingredients.
Keys to a Good Story 1. Create a unique narrative. How did you get here? How have you acted along the way? What are your goals and values? Do you give back to the community, or do your products help people’s lives in a way that you can describe?
5. Follow the rules of storytelling. It is tempting to always show yourself in a perfect light, and never admit an error, but such efforts tend not to make for compelling stories. Your About Us page can be full of the times you tried and failed in the early days of your business. In fact, people are more likely to read to the end of that page if you do exactly that.
2. Know your audience. Finding the right tone and message requires a sense of what your audience will identify with. It’s far easier for a company to say “We’re one of you” if it has a good feel for the cultural background of its customer base.
Good storytelling can have other ingredients as well, as long as you’re recognizable, entertaining and relatable. Now add a positive message that inspires confidence in your product, and you’re ready to begin attracting new customers and building loyalty among your existing ones.
3. Give your brand a face. Many companies use their CEO; others hire an actor or bring in a cartoon character. Whichever mascot you choose, it needs to be recognizable and have a genuinely likeable personality.
And that’s the kind of story that ends well for your company.
4. Connect with people’s emotions. Stay on-message by relating situations that people can readily understand. Your industry may be very technical or even abstract, but by boiling down your output to its real-world effects, you can nevertheless tell a story that has real heart.
+66 223 588 68 Lexicon is a full-service digital marketing agency in Bangkok, Thailand. We specialize in corporate storytelling and produce all of our content in-house, including branding,
copywriting, video production and graphic design.
We bring all of our services together and use Digital PR and social media marketing storytelling to connect our clients with the ideal target audience.
WHAT THE FATCA? INTERNATIONAL TAXATION IS ALREADY A REALITY By Paul Gambles We’re still awaiting the verdict on the case brought by two US-born Canadians suing the Canadian federal government for disclosing their private affairs to the US, without due cause.
1.6 million banking records!
This all about FATCA.
The first was FATCA, but that was just the beginning.
Not content with taxing all of its citizens wherever they lived, Washington introduced legislation that requires ANY bank or other financial institution in the world to provide the account details of those with any US dealings. Consequently, since FATCA’s roll-out in 2014, the Canadian government has passed on over 1.6 million banking records to US tax authorities. Ottawa argues that it had no choice, as FATCA imposes a 30% withholding levy on all payments from US institutions to foreign countries that do not enforce the reporting rules.
Being a Washington-devised system, FATCA is multilateral in the sense that it demands information but has so far only agreed to reciprocate with three other nations. Consequently, other countries have come together to create a true exchange of financial information – the Common Reporting Standard (CRS). This is part of a collection of international agreements, each with its own objectionable acronym, designed to allow countries to swap people’s financial details, including: the status of bank accounts, life insurance policies, investment vehicles and holding companies engaged in investment or financial businesses.
This scrutiny is one of the numerous undesirable knock-on effects of the 2008 Global Financial Crisis, has been governments finding more ways to tax us. It’s sadly ironic that the very people who were victims of that banking mess are having to pay for it again, as governments cut spending and look under various sofas for cash.
The treaties and exchange of information instruments contain strict provisions that require information exchanged to be kept confidential and limit the persons to whom the information can be disclosed and the purposes for which the information may be used. But then, we’re trusting a whole range of governments with our financial data!?!
One of these sofas is international taxation. By that, I’m just not talking about charging mega-corporations on their massive incomes. Nope, I mean getting money from you and me, wherever we may decide to live and work.
Whatever our concerns, automatic exchange of information has already begun, and by the end of last year 100 countries – including Canada – had already sent out their first files. Added to these, there are two countries which have signed up to exchanging information but haven’t yet completed technical implementation. One more has signed up but hasn’t passed the necessary laws yet and seven have signed up in principle but haven’t yet completed the legislative to steps to start.
In reality, though, information exchange has been patchy. In 2018, participating countries sent information to 50 jurisdictions on average. Whilst Canada exchanged with 56 jurisdictions, whether it be through levels of commitment or of technology the bottom four countries only exchanged with 14 others between them. Russia wasn’t much keener, sending information to just 14 other tax authorities. Then there’s the elephant on the room: the notable absentee from the signatories to CRS is the United States. Replicating Washington’s attitude to the League of Nations in 1919, UNESCO and the International Criminal Court, it prefers to go it alone. Its refusal to reciprocate by sharing its residents’ information means that, rather ironically, it has become a tax haven for some.
What about Thailand? Thailand is one of seven ASEAN countries which haven’t yet signed up to automatic exchange. Yet, along with Brunei, Cambodia and the Philippines, the Kingdom is part of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes. This means that there’s a possibility – even a likelihood – that it will eventually join the others in swapping financial details of residents. People living in Thailand will get some warning, though. After all, it’s not as simple as merely signing on the dotted line: the law has to be drafted and enacted, and certain technical requirements have to be met for automatic exchanges to take place. With elections coming up, this is unlikely to happen soon.
Paul Gambles is co-founder of MBMG Group MBMG Group is an advisory firm that assists expatriates and locals within the South-East Asia Region with services ranging from Investment Advisory, Personal Advisory, Tax Advisory, Corporate Advisory, Insurance Services, Accounting & Auditing Services, Legal Services, Estate Planning and Property Solutions.
So, there’ll be plenty of time to prepare. To avoid any undue concern, it’s best to stay informed of how CRS progresses and how it works in practice. We’re certainly keeping a close eye on it. After all, forewarned is forearmed!
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