Outrigger Hotels and Resorts, Asia, has officially established Phuket as its Regional Operating Headquarters (ROH) and been approved by the Thai Government’s Board of Investment, under the Ministry of Industry.
On 30 June, Phuket Governor, Mr Wichai Praisa-ngob gave Outrigger the certification and congratulated them on being the first official regional head office in Phuket.
There are currently over 80 companies with ROH permits operating in Thailand, including leading travel companies such as Amadeus Asia, Diethelm Travel Asia, Exotissmo Travel Group and Dusit Worldwide. Other major ROH brands in Thailand include Bumrungrad International, Chevron Asia, ExxonMobil and General Motors Southeast Asia. Outrigger is the first company to make Phuket an Asian headquarters recognised by the Board of Investment.
Outrigger’s ROH status is unique. “We are a resort company so have chosen a resort location,” said Outrigger’s Senior Vice President, Asia, Mr Darren Edmonstone. “Our expertise since our formation in Hawaii over 60 years ago pertains to warm climate resort holidays. Phuket with its great aviation access, human resources and culture of hospitality is a perfect regional headquarters for us in Asia,” he said.
ROH status gives Outrigger unique privileges and responsibilities in the areas of taxation, human resources, research, product development, sourcing of raw materials and parts, credit management, marketing, sales and technical support. Outrigger’s regional operating headquarters in Phuket officially came into affect in April 2010.
The Thai Government created the ROH program in 2001 to reinforce Thailand’s position as an important business hub.
The Government’s position is that the establishment of a regional headquarters in Thailand by major foreign companies will generate considerable benefits for Thailand and accelerate economic growth.
Specifically, says the Government, the economy benefits from expatriate managers spending on housing, education, shopping and dining. Regional operating headquarters attract international events and meetings. With every ROH established Thai employees have more opportunities to become regional managers with enhanced skills, greater responsibilities and higher salaries.
Outrigger’s Edmonstone added: “The quality and variety of Phuket’s existing human resource pool is excellent and improving all the time. Furthermore, with a headquarters in Phuket, Outrigger can easily access resort areas of potential business interest in India, Indonesia, Vietnam, China and around Asia.”