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Thailand's Siam Commercial Bank to take on rivals with delivery 'super-app'

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BANGKOK, Oct 26 (Reuters) - Thai lender Siam Commercial Bank Pcl on Tuesday said it would increase the services offered by its food delivery app Robinhood next year to include travel, parcel delivery and groceries in Southeast Asia's second-largest economy.

Robinhood was launched last year https://www.reuters.com/article/siam-comm-bank-food-delivery-idUSKBN27B0LY amid surging demand for food delivery due to COVID-19 related lockdowns and now boasts around 2.3 million users and 26,000 riders who handle over 150,000 orders a day.

"Next year will be a year of travel ... Food is a loss leader, but it is building our customer base. This is why we have to be a super-app," said Thana Thienachariya, chairman of Purple Ventures, a subsidiary of SCB, the country's fourth largest lender.

Competition in Thailand's food delivery market intensified this year after Malaysia's AirAsia bought Indonesia's GoJek's business in Thailand https://www.reuters.com/business/malaysias-airasia-talks-buy-gojeks-thailand-business-nikkei-2021-07-07/%20and%20e-commerce%20platform and e-commerce platform Shopee, owned by Singapore's Sea Ltd , rolled out a local food delivery service.

By 2023, Purple Ventures will have invested 4 billion baht to 5 billion baht ($120 million to $150 million) in the app, Thana said. SCB will also seek investors for the app, he added.

Its travel feature will include hotels, flights and car rental and will launch in February next year ahead of Songkran, Thailand's new year festival in April.

Its groceries service will focus on premium products and shops that do not exist on other apps, Purple Ventures Managing Director Srihanath Lamsam said. ($1 = 33.3100 baht) (Reporting by Chayut Setboonsarng; Editing by James Pearson)

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