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Emerald Group CEO Sawit Ketroj seeks to reassure Phuket public, investors

PHUKET: Emerald Group CEO Sawit Ketroj, the prominent Phuket condo developer arrested earlier this month on a fraud charge, and re-released on bail this week after failing to present himself to court as part of his original bail conditions, has held a press conference to address the accusations of fraud and mismanagement.

By The Phuket News

Saturday 19 May 2018, 04:57PM

The press conference took place at the Dara Hotel at 1:30pm today (May 19), but Mr Sawit Ketroj, Executive Director of The Emerald Development Group Co., Ltd. declined to answer direct questions from the media regarding concerns about several of his companies projects.

(See previous stories here, here and here)

“I want to tell everyone that I am confident that our projects will keep going and that just need time. We understand if people want to cancel their contracts with these projects. We are fine because we know The Emerald Development Group is valuable,” said Mr Sawit.

“For foreign clients, I will explain our updated plan in May. We have enough investment and we want to make sure the people of Phuket and our clients are confident in our ability to manage the projects,” added Mr Sawit.

When asked what was going on in the investigation of his charges. Mr Sawit declined to answer directly, saying, “I want to know what is the result of the investigation? Please tell me what is it?”

Mr Sawit released a written statement detailing the state of nine projects, managed through five subsidiary companies, under the Emerald Group’s umbrella in an effort to reassure investors and the public. The statement said negative media coverage had an affected business and tourism confidence in Phuket.

“I and all Emerald Group employees are engaged in business and work with honesty to deliver the best condominium accommodation to the customers who believe in our company throughout the eight years of our hard work,” said Mr Sawit in the statement.

According to the statement the Emerald Group is presently managing the following projects under the control of five separate companies:

• Two completed projects:
Kathu Golf Condo Project by Emerald Development Group Co., Ltd.
The Emerald Terrace Condo Phuket by Phuket Future Development Co., Ltd.

• Two projects under construction:
The Emerald – Central Project by Phuket Capital Real Estate Co., Ltd.
The Emerald City Life Condo Patong by Emerald Development Group Co., Ltd.

• Projects under construction and waiting for license:
The project on land Kalim by Phuket Future Group Co., Ltd. Consisting of four sub-projects:
Emerald Nirvana 1 and 2
Nirvana Lux
Jade Villa Project

QSI International School Phuket

• One project in preparation:
5-star hotel and resort by Phuket Advanced Development Co., Ltd.

“It can be seen that only Phuket Future Group Co., Ltd. is in the media spotlight, but other projects are in different parts and still operated normally. Therefore, it means that this is not a problem for all projects under Emerald Brand,” said the statement.

“Phuket Future Group Co., Ltd. was established since 2014. Currently under construction and gradually operating projects with a total value of B1.2 billion, with total sales of 941 million baht or 70% and B359 million already paid by customers.

“The total investment cost of the project was B117mn , brokerage fee was B56.60mn, construction cost was B110mn, interest and management fee was B68.34mn (excluding additional investment). The total tax amount of B7.61mn was paid regularly.

“So the money from the company’s capital and sales was put to work. There is evidence and the accounts can be verified. The company is now working on the application for permission in other projects. The customers who are confident will receive special conditions as prescribed by the company since starting the project and the contracts to buy and sell. The company has all proper legal contracts.

“The project on Kalim Beach has been developed on an area of 36 rai, divided into a sub-project villas and residences, the company has been partially licensed. The company has been working on the construction permit. Since the construction is on sloping hills, the company has taken great care in engineering and architecture. Especially engineering work, the company most focuses on the safety causing the project to delay.

“We would like to inform the main reason that causing the delay is about the amendment to the new environmental law. As a result, the project needs to be modified in accordance with the new law in the year 2017. It took each party to make changes up to three times each time the sales and customer relations of the company. It has contacted customers via email and other channels all the time.

“All 185 current customers in the project are trustworthy customers. There are 98 customers who cancelled their contracts, representing 50%. The company is willing to make a repayment plan and gradually negotiate to take care of these customers fully.

The current fair value of the company and subsidiaries from estimation is around B6.1bn. As a result, the company is aware of the need to raise funds in various ways and continue to work on the financial plan for the next two to three years, there are other companies from other countries and in Thailand that are interested to collaborate. It is expected that this year we will be able to raise capital to make the whole business more stable. Currently the company has a proper plan for liquidity management.

“Emerald Group Co., Ltd. and its subsidiaries have confidence in the business and that it will continue the construction. All projects will be completed in accordance with their plans and sufficient funding sources. We would like to assure customers and society that Phuket real estate projects are worth investing compare to other provinces.

“I am sure that many projects besides Emerald in various locations in Phuket are all interesting. By Emerald Group is a member of the Real Estate Association. Phuket has set up guidelines and ways to promote real estate that sold to foreigners and Thais. Because real estate is not just increasing revenue and tourism to Phuket only,” concluded Mr Sawit in the statement.



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DeKaaskopp | 21 May 2018 - 14:53:09

Neither sad nor bitter,it's more like being very amused when reading something like:"The reason i rent is because these people can't sell their properties and  have to rent at a loss".Ever thought about that many people want to rent out their properties instead of selling them? 

Fascinated | 21 May 2018 - 12:12:43

DKP- you really are a sad and bitter person aren't you!The reason I rent is because these people CAN'T sell their properties and have to rent at a loss. Why should I not benefit from it?

DeKaaskopp | 20 May 2018 - 12:42:24

Not sure what someone is laughing about. The only people with a reason to smile are those renting out their properties to people like you!

CaptainJack | 20 May 2018 - 12:30:24

So the delay is due to changes in environmental laws in 2017? Construction was supposed to start in 2015, 2 years earlier!

Now this guy actually has the gaul to say he's looking for investors for MORE developments? Can anyone say 'Ponzi scheme'.

BTW We already have FAR too many condos, that's why they're not selling. 

Kurt | 20 May 2018 - 11:58:49

On Phuket are indeed many 'cracks/possibilities' in the chain work of buying/selling property
Getting cheated as a foreign buyer is a great risk. Many examples.
Developers, property agents, lawyers, not all are sincere
But CEO of 'Emerald' projects stepped forward and explained
Let's wait and see
How about A-One project opposite Patong hospital? Not hear anymore about it

Fascinated | 19 May 2018 - 22:30:27

Ha, ha ha, ha ha, ha ha-there's a reason that after 15 years here I still rent! Would you buy  a used car off this man? 

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