Chaiwat Kovavisarach – Green Values Take Bangchak From Refinery to Icon Status

Chaiwat Kovavisarach, president and chief executive officer of Thailand’s Bangchak Corporation

Chaiwat Kovavisarach: president and CEO of Thailand’s Bangchak Corporation

Chaiwat Kovavisarach, president and chief executive officer of Thailand’s Bangchak Corporation, is a man on a mission.

Under his guidance, Bangchak has grown from a Thai refinery into a transnational energy corporation. Kovavisarach brought a quarter-century of experience in engineering, investment banking and executive management to bear while turning around a company whose founding mission was to ensure national energy security.

Kovavisarach progressed its evolution into a model corporate group recognised for its commitment to regional green innovation and sustainable energy.

He took the helm in 2015 and took Bangchak into a new era under the vision of “Evolving Greenovation”, which has made the company a leader in sustainability and innovation.

He expanded Bangchak to span five main areas: Refinery, marketing, green power, bio-based products and natural resources.

In terms of the refinery business, Bangchak has the second-largest market share in Thailand, integrating a network of more than 1,100 service stations, along with supplementary non-oil businesses, most notably Inthanin Coffee. It has expanded to neighbouring ASEAN countries.

Green power is central to Bangchak, with operations and investments in renewable energy via BCPG, an icon in the sector. It has become of Asia-Pacific’s leading companies in renewable energy with solar, hydro, wind and geothermal power businesses in Thailand, Japan, Philippines, Indonesia, and Laos.

Operations and investments in bio-based products and technology has cemented the corporation’s positon as Thailand largest producer and distributor of biofuels. The natural resources focus is on petroleum exploration and production in Norway and lithium mining in the Americas.

To ensure that Bangchak remains competitive, Kovavisarach pushed for the establishment of Bangchak Initiative and Innovation Centre (BiiC). The centre is tasked with cultivating green ecosystems to drive innovation.

His drive and vision have reinforced Bangchak’s reputation as a pioneer of energy technology. It was the first, and remains the only, digital overhead service station in Thailand, and the country’s first Green Community Energy Management System (GEMS) project. The off-grid, AI-powered renewable energy initiative features Thailand’s largest operating lithium battery, laying the foundations for Thailand future energy decentralization and trading.

Bangchak undertook the first trial project for P2P energy trading in South East Asia, the largest in the world at the time of its launch.

Kovarisarach has made Bangchak is a household name in Thailand, and its exploration of environmental alternatives was further advanced with the introduction of Hi Diesel B20s, a product introduced to leverage Thailand’s oil palm and agricultural abundance.

Bangchak has also established the SynBio Academy, a consortium of corporations and academics to develop viable and sustainable synthetic biotechnology.

Kovavisarach’s dedication to Bangchak’s sustainable growth through integrated and balanced strategies, and his passion for innovation, have seen the company honoured with awards in innovation and creativity, corporate governance, financial successes, and corporate image.

Chaiwat Kovavisarach has been recognised domestically and internationally for his leadership, and has been a pivotal figure in propelling the Bangchak Group towards energy transition.

His passion for green innovation – above and beyond Bangchak’s businesses – is reflected in a monthly column in Krungthep Thurakij (Bangkok BizNews). Two compilations of his articles have been published in book form.

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