Thailand's PTT Oil and Retail to spend $900 mln on expansion this year

BANGKOK, March 27 (Reuters) - Thailand's oil and gas retailer, PTT Oil and Retail Business Pcl (OR.BK) on Monday said it plans to invest $900 million this year to expand its local and overseas business.

About 45% of the budget will be used to expand its coffee house franchise, Cafe Amazon and fried chicken chain, Texas Chicken, Chief Executive Officer Disathat Panyarachun said.

PTT Oil and Retail, a unit of the state-owned energy giant PTT Pcl (PTT.BK), said 22% of the budget would be used to expand its network of gas and electric vehicle (EV) charging stations.

This year, it plans to add 122 gas stations, 400 coffee shops and 500 EV stations, Disathat said, adding it was also looking for mergers and acquisitions.

The company currently operates over 2,100 gas stations, 300 EV charging stations and about 3,900 coffee shops.

The expansion comes as Thai motorists are gradually moving towards switching to EVs, helped by government subsidies and price cuts from manufacturers.

Last year, Tesla launched sales in Thailand while China's BYD said it was setting up a factory to produce 150,000 vehicles per year.

Reporting by Chayut Setboonsarng; Editing by Martin Petty

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