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Smart Cities innovation for urbanization challenges

The ongoing COVID-19 outbreak is affecting more than two-thirds of the global population and is now putting a heavy burden on the global economy. The rate of the outbreak has caused business leaders to think of new strategies and keep up with the evolving situation. The crisis has prompted many traditional businesses to adopt new norms, with technology being the key enabler to ensure the utmost business normality.

For decades, new technology has been changing the way we live, work, and play, but this outbreak has triggered the rate of digital adoption to be faster than ever before. Individuals and businesses who may have been reluctant to embrace digital technology have no choice but to change.

Thailand is on the cusp of digital transformation and the epidemic has propelled technology adoption among business operators to be fundamental for survival. With a GDP worth US$602 billion, Thailand is the second-largest economy in Southeast Asia, surpassed only by Indonesia. The country is also the second-largest Business-to-Consumer (B2C) e-commerce market in the region.

Strategically located in the heart of Southeast Asia, Thailand has attracted a number of multinational corporations, investors, venture capitalists, and start-ups around the world. One of the areas that are critical for Thailand to prosper is the success of the Thailand 4.0 model, which aims to build economic prosperity through innovation, knowledge, technology, and creativity to unlock the country from the middle-income trap and connect the country to the global community.

Following the economic growth over the past years, the rate of urbanization has consequently grown tremendously and this has resulted in increasing urban challenges including overpopulation, traffic congestion, sprawling cities, environmental degradation, and slow mobility within and between cities, to name a few.

Realizing these challenges, the public and private sectors have been steadfast to take advantage of modern technology to increase the efficiency of city management and improve the citizen’s well-being. However, to successfully implement new solutions that are scalable, a close collaboration between all stakeholders is crucial.

Plug and Play’s Smart Cities Program will be the facilitator for the success of building cities to be smarter. Realizing that digital technology will continue to be more widely available and intertwined for urban lives, we have been in the forefront of building a successful ecosystem of Smart Cities around the world by bringing together all the key players to solve these urban challenges.

Having all the right ingredients for the digital ecosystem to thrive, there has never been a better time to be involved in Plug and Play’s Smart Cities Program.

As Thailand is leapfrogging to become the next epicenter for technology and innovation, only those organizations whose ability to transform digitally will thrive. We welcome our partners who share our vision of an innovation platform and learn from each other, find common synergies and break up silos for a better city of tomorrow.



Tanya Tongwaranan is the Program Manager for our Smart Cities program in Thailand.

To know more about our programs in Thailand, click here.

As an in-house venture capital, our goal is to fund the teams that are building the defensible businesses of the future. By leveraging our capital, our network of VCs, and our corporate partners, we give our portfolio companies an added advantage. Find out more here!


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