For most consumers, Café Amazon, the flagship coffee chain of Thailand’s leading oil and retail operator PTT Oil and Retail Business Plc. (OR), is a beloved Thai coffeehouse brand widely favored as a green oasis where they can rest and recuperate during their journey. Every Café Amazon branch takes a clear stance on the ambience of lush tropical forest, the taste of coffee that caters to local consumer preferences, the vast array of location and the value for money. In a closer look, the tremendous success of Café Amazon lies far beyond its aromatic signature coffee blend and inviting décor that win the heart of million customers. The coffee chain also inherits OR’s true purpose as a business deeply committed to growing a sustainable business in line with the vision of “Empowering All toward Inclusive Growth”, with value and benefits shared by all people in the society.
As the largest coffee franchise network in Southeast Asia and the world’s 6th largest coffee chain by number of outlets with over 4,300 outlets across 11 markets in Asia selling 357 million cups of beverages in 2022, Café Amazon has a sizable business platform to promote inclusive growth model by capitalizing the new opportunities with business partners on the model of granting master franchise rights to established F&B operators in the global markets.
“Café Amazon for Chance” project, for instance, is an epitome of success in resonating OR’s voice as a long-standing benefactor in bolstering inclusive growth business model as well as the company’s contributing role to the development of people’s quality of life and local economy through corporate shared value (CSV). First launched in 2018, the project aims to promote social equality and supports underprivileged groups, including the elderly, people with hearing impairment, people with learning difficulties, military veterans and their family members, by offering them barista jobs at Café Amazon. The project also provides training for these groups of people on essential working skills required at the café.
“Café Amazon for Chance project is a social enterprise model that has achieve remarkable success in promoting opportunities for individuals who are less privileged,” said Racha U-thaichan, Senior Executive Vice President, Global Business, PTT Oil and Retail Business Plc. (OR). “The initiative has served as a real-world example of how businesses can make a positive impact on the society by implementing equal employment practices to ensure that every individual is being treated equally and fairly.”
“After 5 years of Café Amazon for Chance implementation, a large number of Café Amazon franchisees has expressed interest to join the project. This has motivated us to consider expanding this model across the Asia Pacific region. By replicating this initiative in other countries, we are keen to extend the benefits and opportunities to even more individuals and communities. We believe that the unique business model aims at creating lasting impact on people and planet is a universal language that people across the world are willing to embrace with open arms,” added Racha.
OR set goal to implement Café Amazon for Chance project in 500 operational branches of the coffee house chain across Asia Pacific markets by 2027. As of May 2023, there are 122 Café Amazon for Chance branches in Thailand, and one in Cambodia. Two more Café Amazon for Chance branches will be launched in Cambodia by end of the year.
At the first Café Amazon for Chance branch in Cambodia, located on Phreah Sihanouk boulevard in Phnom Penh, many local customers feel elated to support and encourage hearing impaired people as well as get a new experience of communication without words. “It’s hard for me to get a job because I can’t speak. With employment opportunity offered by Café Amazon for Chance, I can break that wall of silence. I feel so valued despite my special situation. I’ve never thought I could be useful or productive like this,” said Ly Sothearoth, an employee at Café Amazon for Chance branch in Cambodia.
The Café Amazon for Chance project fulfills and strengthens the role of OR in providing opportunities for individuals and uplifting the quality of life within the communities. This project is developed in alignment with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. Moreover, the project is part of OR’s own ‘SDG’ framework which comprises Small – gather opportunities for the communities and the improved quality of life of the locals; Diversified – offer more products and services on OR’s platform for diverse and wide-ranging business opportunities for common growth; and Green – ensure its entire operation as a green business, as well as achieving carbon neutrality by 2030 and Net Zero by 2050.