AIS distances itself from Thaksin family as subscribers desert to rivals

AIS ad announcing its change of ownership

AIS ad distances the brand from the Thaksins

Thai telco AIS is running an ad campaign to distance itself from its former owner and founder Thaksin Shinawatra, the exiled former prime minister.

A press campaign has launched along with SMS marketing and an announcement from the CEO stating that the company is no longer owned by the Shinawatra family, which has sold its stake to Singapore-based Temasek Holdings.

Despite the campaign, the telco has been losing customers, Tech in Asia is reporting. According to the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission of Thailand, double the number of people who usually switch phone accounts left AIS. Meanwhile local media is reporting large queues of people outside AIS stores waiting to cancel their accounts.

An advertising agency executive told Mumbrella that many Thais still suspect that Shinawatra has a shareholding in the company and are angry over an alleged tax scandal involving the sale of Shinawatra’s company Shin Corp.

The beneficiary of the consumer outcry is rival telco Dtac, which has taken on 70 per cent of the subscribers who have deserted AIS. It is also running an ad campaign to encourage more people to move their accounts. The rest have moved to True Move H.

Anti-government protesters in Thailand, which is in the throes of political meltdown, have been calling on consumers to boycott any brands with ties to the Shinawatra family.

AIS creates its advertising inhouse through Matchbox and uses Dentsu for media.



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