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Thailand: Study ranks top ‘power brands’ in Thailand

Toyota, Dutch Mill, KFC, Kasikornbank and Dtac are ranked as the country’s most powerful brands this year among their sectors, according to a brand equity study by Millward Brown.

The company conducted its “BrandZ Thailand" research by interviewing 2,400 consumers aged 18-60 and asking them about their perceptions across key brands in six categories: financial, automotive, telecommunications, female beauty/skincare, health beverages, and food-service restaurants.

The study focused on five drivers of success for brands in Thailand, including brand preference, differentiation, awareness and innovation.

Usana Chantarklum, managing director of Millward Brown Firefly Thailand, said that in the automotive category, Toyota had a brand-power score of 24.2 percent, higher than its closest competitor Honda (16.3 percent).

In the health-beverage category, Thai company Dutch Mill was the leader with a brand-power score of 13.1 percent.

In the banking sector, Kasikornbank was seen as a ‘star’ brand by Thai consumers, obtaining a brand-power score of 16.5 per cent, followed by Siam Commercial Bank (16.1 percent) and Bangkok Bank (14 percent).

“The success of Kasikornbank in this category is based on innovation as the main factor. This is illustrated with its comprehensive digital banking options as well as privileged and special services for customers in each segment, such as ‘The Wisdom’ and K Bank Private banking service," Usana added.

Meanwhile, in the food-service restaurant category, KFC came out the leader with a power-brand score of 28.4 percent.

Total Access Communication, which provides telecommunication service under Dtac, was ranked No 1 in the telecoms sector, while Nivea came top in the female beauty/skincare products category.

Photo Credit: reuters/達志影像

Photo Credit: Reuters

Vietnam: Vietnamese journalist sentenced for passing state secrets to China

Ha Huy Hoang, previous employee at a Foreign Ministry-run magazine, was sentenced six years on Wednesday for colluding with a Chinese spy, showing the mistrust of China runs deep in Vietnam, which has vastly improved ties with the US.

According to Vietnamese court, the information Ha provided included Vietnam’s political and economic policies, as well as the biographies of some of the country’s top leaders. He also provided information on the Vietnamese government’s handling of anti-China protests following the parking of a Chinese oil rig platform in disputed waters in the South China Sea.

Ha’s lawyer says, Ha did contact a woman and provide some information, but he did not know the woman he was in contact with worked for China’s intelligence agency. He said the information Ha provided was public and did not involve state secrets.

Son said the jail sentence imposed on his client was not justified since the evidence against him was not sufficient.

Apple Daily reports, this is another spy case related to China following the Chinese spy pigeon incident in January this year. The Vietnamese police claimed that some of the Chinese race pigeons flying to Vietnam were probing state secrets of Vietnam.

Photo Credit: AP/達志影像

Photo Credit: AP

Cambodia: Casinos rake in US$ 2 billion

Chea Serey, director-general of the National Bank of Cambodia, told a workshop on statistics in international trade in services that Cambodia’s proportion of casino revenue to total tourism receipts followed only that of Macau and Monaco on September 20.

Serey says that in 2013 Macau generated annual casino revenue of about $44 billion, compared to $2 billion in Cambodia, while Las Vegas generated casino revenue of $7.5 billion.

Serey stresses that Cambodia does not have experience in conducting statistical surveys on the value of the gambling industry. It is the first time the national bank has obtained relevant financial reports and economic data with help from Australia and New Zealand.

According to the statistics issued by the government, so far Cambodia has 64 casinos, mostly located near the borders. Tax revenue from casinos reached US$ 25 million in 2014. The government also plans to pass a casino law at the end of this year that doubles tax collection from casinos.

Photo Credit: reuters/達志影像

Photo Credit: Reuters

Compiled and Translated by June and Eric Wong
Edited by Olivia Yang