Jessada Sookdhis, CEO and co-founder of robo-advisor and wealth management firm Finnomena is leading the charge to diversify Thailand's financial sector.
In a recent interview, he said wealth management is crucial in an aging society that still heavily depends on tourism for much of its growth. In 2018 alone, Thailand drew nearly 40 million tourists that generated USD52 billion, with the industry accounting for about 10 percent of its gross domestic product.
Sookdhis noted that the Thai financial technology sector has a major role to play and has recently seen the emergence of new startups that are trying to disrupt the conventional financial industry. “There were only 40-50 fintech companies here four years ago. Now, there are about 200 fintech companies up and running in the nation,” he added.
Sookdhis served as the first chairman of the Fintech Club of Thailand, a precursor to the current Thai Fintech Association, from March 2016 to April this year. He and other like-minded politicians and entrepreneurs, including Korn Chatikavanij, former Thai finance minister, founded the association in an effort to promote the local fintech market take a main role in what he calls a “mega trend” in the global financial market.
Like most other countries, Thailand is transiting to the digital sphere but is doing so at a more rapid pace than other countries. A growing number of Thais are spending more time using mobile banking services to manage their money, including digital investments.
Sookdhis worked as a fund manager for 16 years before founding Finnomena in 2016. What started as a small company with four members has grown into 70-member firm managing nearly USD200 million assets under advisement.
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