American Express looking to expand in Thai market

American Express is increasing its perks for Platinum Card holders in Thailand in a bid to win over more consumers in the Kingdom and generate greater acceptance by merchants as the brand has long trailed rivals Visa and MasterCard in the Thai market.

“In Thailand, our strategy is to be a leader in the premium and super-premium segments with our products and customer service by accelerating merchant acceptance,” said Prom Sirisant, Vice-President and Thailand Country Manager at American Express.

He said that the American Express regards Thailand as one of its priority markets. The company registered strong growth in Thailand last year compared to 2019. Thai cardholders’ spending in foreign countries rose markedly, with foreign transactions up by more than 100 percent in 2022 compared with 2019.

Nonetheless, domestic purchases in Thailand also rose, as many Thais chose to travel and vacation within the Kingdom even after borders reopened in other countries. Hotels were the merchants that provided American Express with the most robust growth.

Accelerating card acceptance among merchants in Thailand is key to the company’s strategy so that more members can use their cards at more places, Prom said. It plans to continue putting more effort into increasing coverage and improving perceptions of coverage among cardholders and merchants, he added.

Among consumers, Prom said that they see potential in the premium segment as the younger generation becomes increasingly affluent. In addition, Millennials and Generation Z customers already make up more than half of our global acquisitions.

American Express learned significantly from the pandemic, including that things can rapidly change. In response, the firm is focusing on sustainable long-term growth, while remaining agile to adapt to different situations.

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