Generation T is an initiative we are proud to be launching this month. In doing so, we’re aligning with our sister titles in Hong Kong, Singapore, Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia to create a growing network of next-generation industry leaders across the region. At a deeper level, however, Generation T is a celebration of motivation and successes for the purpose of perpetuating them. After all, Tatler has always been in the business of shining the spotlight on brilliance.
As this is the inaugural Thailand Tatler Generation T, selecting the frst 50 people was an onerous task. We relied on the expertise of veterans from 10 different industries to nominate candidates from within their fields. Officially, we refer to this esteemed panel as the Tatler Tribe—yes, for real. Among the Tribe are names and faces, you’d be hard-pressed not to recognise.
First up are the "Influencers", in which the complexity of this category is worth discussing in detail. Put to the task is founder of Timo Trunks and AP Thailand VP Sappasit Foongfaungchaveng. The fashion entrepreneur and marketing guru, who himself was nominated to the Generation T list by fellow Tribe members, adds that influencers should possess the ability to “dictate the power of now”, regardless of social bloodline or family wealth.” Sappasit believes that the power to influence nowadays has shifted even further, to the domain of the creative class—people with new ideas and the knowhow to see innovation through.
On Generation T itself, he sees the project as a vision of new luxury. “It’s not just about money and wealth. It’s about new energy, new creativity and new ideas. I love this Tatler vision of the Brave New World.” On his own inclusion in the list, the 37-year-old jokes that he is glad to have made the age cut.
Besides influencers, another heavily scrutinised category throughout the selection process for the final 50 was Tech. Generation T is, after all, centred on the premise of “what’s next”. For this category, we recruited DTAC director Sompoat Chansomboon and Surawat Promyotin of Bangkok Venture Club and Stylhunt for their insights into an industry that is pivotal, swiftly growing and subsequently difficult to map.
“It’s not just about money and wealth. It’s about new energy, new creativity and new ideas. I love this Tatler vision of the Brave New World.” — Sappasit Foongfaungchaveng
“Technology is an enabler, a driving force in virtually every industry. It is a category to which everyone should be paying attention,” says Surawat. Coming from Thailand’s largest accredited angel investor group, he adds that in choosing candidates from the nation’s pool of tech-driven start-ups, he wanted to highlight those who contribute to the tech community as a whole—not just to their individual business—and those who really push the boundaries of development in a way that uplifts the credibility of the “Thai tech ecosystem”.
Outlining these criteria, however, didn’t make the task of picking candidates much easier. “Bangkok is small but it is super dynamic. Most of the people I know seem to be great at something. There are many who have contributed to the tech ecosystem, and their impact is extremely difficult to quantify,” says Surawat of his Tribe duty.
Whereas Surawat talks about the “tech ecosystem”, another one of our Tribe members, Jay Spencer, alludes to ecosystem in its original context of the environment. A mastermind behind creative properties such as TCDC and his own project, Woof Pack, Jay may not be on the frontline of environmental preservation per se, but we see in his work ethics and his personal pursuits a strong interest to align with those who are.
“My way of choosing candidates for this category was basically instinctive,” he says. “There are some people whose names are synonymous with environmental preservation here—you can’t help but think of them when you think of Thailand’s eco movement.”
However, when you do get around to really thinking about ecological conservation, you realise what a broad category it actually is. There are simply so many facets to the environment and, consequently, to its protection. So what aspects of ecological conservation will you see represented in this year’s Generation T?
“After doing some research I came to the conclusion that food and how and where we get it is a critically important issue of our ecology. We should be paying more attention to how our food is produced and how that production relates back to the environment where the food is grown.”
Jay also had a number of other criteria for narrowing down his roster of eco leaders. “I preferred to go with people running projects that have grassroot benefits, rather than those with more commercial goals in mind,” he explains, “Given the selectivity, you want to make sure you’re supporting efforts that are first and foremost about the cause.” Like our Tech Tribe expert Sam, Jay particularly sought out causes that showed long-term potential. “Thailand isn’t exactly the most responsible nation when it comes to taking care of ecosystems. Novel ways of creating products or services that can change our attitudes and behaviour towards the environment in the long run, that’s something to reward.”
“There are people you just have to put on the Generation T list. They are well established, undeniably accomplished and most importantly, they’re not resting on their laurels. You simply can’t neglect them.” — Saisa Amaranand
One thing all our Tatler Tribe luminaries and listers have in common—a trait shared by all good leaders in fact—is the ability to communicate well. This is particularly important if you operate in a cluttered marketplace such as Thailand’s burgeoning F&B industry. Which is why we turned to an old friend, Saisa Amranand, the public relations specialist for Dean and Deluca, for guidance in this Generation T category. Alongside F&B guru Kim Wachtveitl of Wine Garage, she proved to be the perfect liaison between our project and the rising stars of the food industry.
“There are people you just have to put on the Generation T list. They are well established, undeniably accomplished and most importantly, they’re not resting on their laurels. You simply can’t neglect them,” Saisa says, but adds, “What I’ve also tried to do is find people who are below the radar but deserve a higher profile—new faces that should be introduced to the public. There’s definitely a younger generation gaining traction in the Thai F&B industry.”
Dining, Technology, Environment and Influencers are just a few of the categories of inspiring young leaders to look forward to in Thailand Tatler’s 2017 Generation T. There are so many more, including Fashion, Architecture and Design, Sports, Business, Arts and Entertainment.
Generation T is something rather new and game-changing for the Tatler brand and image—a “brave new world,” to borrow from the eloquent Sappasit. It is the first time we’ve embraced the achievements of a young group on this scale and it’s exciting!
So come July 19, find out who are Thailand Tatler’s Generation T 2017.
Follow us on Instagram @ThailandTatler for behind-the-scenes access to our exclusive reveal party.
Meet The Tribe Members
This article is originally published in Thailand Tatler July 2017 issue and has been edited for online.