Thailand’s first corporate counsel association invites GC to join

THAI-CCA, Thailand in-house counsel association
The founding members of the THAI-CCA

Thailand’s first formal corporate counsel group, the Thai Corporate Counsel Association (THAI-CCA), is taking shape with organisers inviting all in-house lawyers to join ahead of the official launch in June.

Senior general counsel at Thai companies established the THAI-CCA to promote the sharing of knowledge, practical experience, legal innovation, and legal industry trends. It is encouraging all in-house lawyers in Thailand to register with the THAI-CCA to gain full access to its member-only activities.

The THAI-CCA was founded in February and will have its official launch on 22 June at the inaugural GC Powerlist Thailand event, held in partnership with the Legal 500.

Currently, the association does not intend to charge any membership fees for the next few years as it assesses various operating models, member benefits, and sponsorship programmes to determine what is most suitable for Thai corporate counsel. By 2026, the THAI-CCA is expected to be a fully incorporated professional organisation.

During this initial set-up phase, Sahachai “Jack” Wibuloutai, general counsel at PwC Thailand and the Mekong Region, and Thitiwat “Beam” Wisarath, chief legal compliance and risk officer at digital asset exchange Gulf Binance, will be co-presidents to manage the THAI-CCA.

“While there are many steps required for setting up the THAI-CCA, we plan to organise a few major events this year to bring Thai in-house lawyers together, promote awareness of our association among other legal communities, and keep up with regional and global trends,” said Wibuloutai.

“Our objective for the immediate future is to bring all general counsel and corporate counsel based in Thailand together. The THAI-CCA will not only be a voice for our in-house legal profession but also an ear to actively listen to our fellow corporate counsel, discuss issues we are facing and solve those issues together.”

Wibuloutai and Wisarath are also supported by other founding members. They are Atipong Chittchang, vice president and head of legal at real estate developer Raimon Land; Ard Sakuntanakalap, former legal manager at PwC Thailand; Chitanong Poomipark, chief legal officer at multinational hospitality company Dusit International; Maprang Sombatthai, legal director at internet company LINE; Natchapon Padungkittimal, first senior vice president – legal at multinational conglomerate B.Grimm; Pajaree Thongvanit, head of legal at CIMB Thai Bank; Pakawat Phitakchutidet, legal compliance lead at Shopee; Pavaratch Visaikul, assistant vice president legal at the Stock Exchange of Thailand; Rugeradh Tungsupakul, head of legal at Lazada Thailand; Sayam Siwarapornskul, chief legal officer of multi-industry conglomerate BTS Group Holdings; Thitipon Mahem, assistant director at Thailand’s Eastern Economic Corridor; Visitsak Arunsuratpakdee, legal director at communications conglomerate True Corporation; and Pathanit Mungkornpanich, director, head of legal at BNP Paribas.

The initial operating plan categorises the THAI-CCA’s missions into three pillars:

  • The academy, where the association upskills the capabilities of in-house lawyers by organising educational, thought leadership and professional development seminars;
  • The network, where the association brings all in-house lawyers in Thailand together and connect with broader groups of in-house lawyers in the region; and
  • The community, where the association promotes professional quality and advances the highest ethical standards governing the practice of law in a corporate setting, shares career opportunities, develops the next generation of in-house lawyers, and builds a collaborative in-house legal community.

“As the role of corporate counsel continues to evolve, the THAI-CCA aspires to be a community of solvers where members work together in innovative ways to solve important problems and challenges facing our businesses and our society,” said Wibuloutai.

“In collaboration with law firms, knowledge partners and law schools in Thailand, we also plan to organise an annual law conference, seminars, and soft-skill training sessions for in-house lawyers. Some activities will also be extended to law students and recent graduates who wish to pursue a career in the corporate counsel profession.”

The THAI-CCA also received support from leading law firms in Thailand as sponsors and knowledge partners, including Chandler MHM, Herbert Smith Freehills, Kudun & Partners, and Tilleke & Gibbins. Other in-house counsel alliances in the region, such as the Singapore Corporate Counsel Association and the Association of Corporate Counsel, will also help the THAI-CCA to participate in regional and global networks.