Siam Seaplane Thailand – Aims To Launch In 2020
Siam Seaplane is currently raising funds as part of a Seed Financing Round and the company indicates openness towards domestic and international private and professional investors that can offer both capital as well as expertise or passion for seaplane operations in Thailand. Several investment opportunities are considered, as the company’s Chief Business Officer, Dennis Keller tells us.
With a proposed launch date at the end of the second quarter of 2020, Siam Seaplane has upped the ante in seeking investors and business partners to realize its launch plans. We spoke with Dennis Keller, CBO at the airline to see where things stand. “Siam Seaplane is the first premium seaplane service for Thailand,” Keller says. “Initially, we will start from Bangkok and look at the immediate vicinity – anything within about an hour reach. We might fly from somewhere like Bangkok Suvarnabhumi directly to the marina here for example. It can also be to a beachfront resort or to a hotel, or a lake.” In phase two, Siam Seaplane will set itself up for a successful expansion in southern Thailand.
With licensing and approval of the landing sites presenting the biggest challenges to all things seaplanes, almost everywhere in the world, Thailand represents one of the worthy nations to develop in terms of seaplane services. Siam Seaplane is working with Thai authorities to obtain an Operator’s License (OL) and Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) required to run the services. It is also working on partnerships with travel agents, resorts, and marinas.
“We’re not just looking at tourists to get to resorts, but there there is a need for other segments, such as yacht owners/users, business executives, and even just friends and families for getaways. This experience of landing right at a waterfront is an experience which Thailand is missing.” Keller, says.
The company has an undisclosed US partner with experience in establishing the seaplane business model in new markets, and this partner will also help in terms of aircraft selection and training. Keller believes that the seaplane model can work in Thailand, as it does in the Maldives. “We’re not just looking at tourists to get to resorts but there could be a need for yacht owners or people who want to go on a yacht trip to hop on the seaplane. You then get to land right in front of the yacht and that is an experience which Thailand is missing.
It helps to put Thailand on the map by offering more premium services. Its a premium, mass-market product at the end of the day and Thai authorities would be smart to let this type of transportation service develop. Slated to start with charter flights, Keller says, that options are kept open for a scheduled service, which largely depends on how relationships with resorts and marinas develop.
In terms of a planned fleet, Siam Seaplane is exploring two options, the Cessna 208B Caravan or the Daher Kodiak likely with two or three aircraft ready and on the line for service. Both aircraft appeal to commercial operations with up to 8 passengers and similar levels of equipment. A Cessna 206 (Stationair) is in use in a testing environment. Further developments and plans will be shared on Seaplanemagazine.com.