Oldest Thailand Conglomerate Eyes Power Projects in Europe, U.S.
(Bloomberg) -- B.Grimm Group, Thailand’s oldest industrial conglomerate, is mulling investments in power projects in Eastern Europe and the U.S. to tap rising demand for renewable energy.
The closely held group, which gets most of its earnings from Bangkok-listed B.Grimm Power Pcl, is exploring whether to invest on its own or through partnerships, with financing a key deciding factor, said Caroline Link, the president of B.Grimm Joint Venture Holding Co., one of its main investment arms.
“The renewables side is very interesting at the moment,” said Link, 39, in an interview with Bloomberg Television. “We have such growth potential in the energy sector,” with a major focus on “very interesting” projects in Eastern Europe, she said, without elaborating on possible U.S. ventures.
The group is also exploring new gas-fired plants in Vietnam, where it already operates solar-power projects, she said. Malaysia and South Korea also offer potential for new power ventures, she said. About 26% of the group’s current generating capacity of 2,000 megawatts comes from renewable sources, she said.
B.Grimm is controlled by Harald Link, Caroline’s father, and her family, which owns more than 60% in B.Grimm Power, its only listed company. The value of that holding is at least $1.9 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
The conglomerate’s businesses include building materials, healthcare and property development. It has also long had ventures with Florida-based Carrier Global Corp. for heating, air-conditioning and refrigeration products. Founded in 1878 as Siam Dispensary, the group was acquired about a century ago by Adolf Link, Caroline’s great-grandfather.
Based on its expected expansion, the group has set a target to about double its annual revenue to 150 billion baht ($4.45 billion) by 2028, when it will mark its 150-year anniversary.
Here are some notable comments from the interview:
- Asian region will continue to be the group’s key expansion target
- B.Grimm is focused on solar- and wind-power projects
- Healthcare is also an important growth sector following the pandemic
- A key activity is building human resources to prepare for business expansion
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