Back to the origin of Raja ferry, it all began when Mr. Apichart Chayopas started the business under the name of “Chao Phaya Hin On – Granite Company”, he had gained the opportunity to travel in a ferry from Donsak, SuratThani to Koh Samui. That experience reminded him about the first impression he had on travelling by the ferry at Pike Place Market when he was studying at Peninsula High School, Seattle, USA. Therefore, when he paid a visited to Koh Samui again with his father to invest in real estate and hotel industry, they heard that Samui Ferry which was then owned by a different company they would like to sell their business, so Mr. Apichart’s family took this opportunity and decided to take over and change the name into “RAJA FERRY PORT”.
Raja ferry was established in 1981 and Mr. Apichart started to take charge of the business in 1997, which was the year of the economic crisis period in Thailand. He strived to continue his father’s legacy and resolution to work hard to provide the best ferry services for the people in SuratThani Province and tourists who were willing to travel by ferry to see the beautiful scenery of Koh Samui and Koh Phangan.
Another dream that Mr. Apichart wanted to fulfil is to achieve his father’s mission by taking his company to be registered into the Stock Exchange of Thailand. Other people were also given the opportunity to be a part of his company among other Shareholders. He set up his goal to provide and be the best ferry service in Thailand and simultaneously expand to South East Asia.
With the ongoing efforts and hard work of Mr. Apichart, he successfully registered Raja ferry into the Stock Exchange of Thailand on 12th November 2015. By doing so, he has fulfilled his father’s dreams and mission for the continued growth of Raja Ferry.
Mr. Apichart gained his experience from travelling to the corners of the world by ferry and with the knowledge of his educational background in which he pursued in the field of Monetary and Financial Economics, he was able to apply the knowledge and skills to improve and sustain Raja ferry’s service to be private pier which can serve passengers up to 1.5 million each year.
Raja Ferry Services has been using 3 primary ports, which are Donsak, Koh Samui and Koh Phangan port for passenger service. Raja ferry not only provide Passenger Ferry services but also barge services to transport vehicles along the same ports of Donsak, Koh Samui, and Koh Pha-ngan.
Raja Ferry offer services in 3 major routes which are Donsak -Koh Samui- Donsak, Donsak – Koh Phangan – Donsak, and Koh Samui- Koh Phangan – Koh Samui. In the present, we have a total of 13 ferries and we have plans to increase the number of ferries in the near future.
However, Raja Ferry services does not just stop there. Raja Ferry Port has an additional transportation service, RP Van Transport service which was established and running since 1 March 2016. RP Van covers land transport service from Port to important location such as Surat Thani airport and train station which are among other prominent destination.
Among Raja ferry services which includes passenger ferry services to Koh Samui and Koh Phangan, ferry services is provided for logistics and heavy duty transportations that includes 6-wheel trucks, trailer, and even fuel tank.
Mr. Apichart has always been more concerned on the development of his employees’, he strives to ensure that they can serve the best service to our customer with pleasant smile on their face and keeping up to the current state and sufficiency of the economy. Also, we are constantly looking for new technology or specialist to improve our business to be able to go to greater heights in providing high standard service.
Raja ferry is induced by King Bhumibol Adulyadej Rama 9 ’s guideline to produce biodiesel oil from used oil by established “Raja Bio Diesel Co., Ltd.”. We bought used oil from Surat Thani’s community to reduce fuel cost. The company had been signing MOU with Alternate Energy Institute of Thailand Foundation (Ethanol – Biodiesel), for testing to use coconut oil instead of diesel oil. The capacity of producing biodiesel oil is at least 100,000 liters per day.
It is not easy to operate and manage the service business in a large scale on an everyday basis where work starts from 05.00am until 7.30pm with more than 50 trips each day. Mr. Apichart has an idea to manage his life. He said “You must focus on your duty, enjoy your job, and live with happiness in everyday”.
Mr. Apichart plans to write a book to share his experience and knowledge to the next generation when he retires. As a book lover, he has always been Inspired by his widely and variety of knowledge from the books that he has read.
“I always take some time to embrace all the things that happen in my everyday routine before bedtime, then I gather the good things to thank and be grateful, and also I meditate to keep myself calm.
An old traditional belief, to be a perfect person, you have to achieve at least 3 things in your life. The first is planting a tree, the second is having a family, and the last is writing a book. I have already achieved 2 things in my life, but I am left with one more achievement, which is writing a book as It is my desire to do so in the future and to be the legacy for my descendants”