No longer is it just the food, hotel or tourism industry that attracts foreign investors to Thailand.
Those are simply not exotic enough any more.
No, the latest trend seems to be the country's lucrative crocodile industry.
One of the shops in Bangkok selling leather goods made from crocodile skin.
In addition to bags, the tanned skins can also be used in furniture and upholstery.
Crocodile hides have become a high-growth industry in Thailand, one that is increasingly eyed by foreign interests.
Thailand has the largest crocodile farming industry in the world, and popular international fashion brands source their exotic skins from here.
About 700,000 crocodiles are raised on 22 farms registered with the Fisheries Department and another 929 small farms nationwide.
Thailand exports crocodile hides and boned and boneless meat as well as processed foods including crocodile sausage and ground meat.
The animal's blood is also in demand in many Asian markets for its purported medicinal properties.
Now Japanese investors have started their own production sites in Samut Prakan province.
And the Chinese are forging partnerships with crocodile farms to insure a steady supply of crocodile leather to meet rising demand in the Middle Kingdom.
Such moves are hardly welcome by local producers who say it makes the business environment more competitive and difficult than it already is.
This is also of concern to small Thai businesses that do not even own a crocodile farm.
"Our revenue will drop if our main customers [the Japanese] stop buying finished goods from us," said Jirachayanan Prasittragul, the managing director of JK&P Product Ltd.
Founded four years ago by former company employees, JK&P manufactures and sells mainly luxury luggage and multifunctional small leather goods for business executives and made-to-order leather products, employing about 10 workers, with the Japanese and Chinese as its key customers.
The company buys crocodile hides largely from Sriracha Crocodile Farm, which raises 20,000 to 30,000 animals.
The farm supplies about 200 crocodiles a month to JK&P.
"Business is faring well and remains promising," said Ms Jirachayanan.
"But the key challenge is the short supply of high-quality crocodile hide and limited capital."
Premium-quality crocodile skins are now allocated for export by farms.
The Chinese are also scary because they tend to monopolise leather sheets from the entire farm, said Ms Jirachayanan, adding that Chinese buyers usually buy raw tanned leather sheets from Thailand but work on the value-added goods in their own country to maximise profits.
Japan, China, South Korea and Russia are the biggest importers of tanned crocodile skins and finished products from Thailand, while demand from Europe is relatively lower due to conservationist concerns.
Production including tanned leather sheets and finished goods is geared towards foreign buyers, as the market for Thai customers is narrow.
Ms Jirachayanan said customers in Thailand are mostly affluent high-society types, and those bored with brand name goods look for an alternative in crocodile leather products.
Mathnee Nacchanandana, a 60-year-old crocodile leather enthusiast, said her family has always been fond of crocodile leather bags due to their durability.
Her mother still uses ones she bought more than two decades ago.
"There wasn't much choice in the early years, mostly natural colours, but these days there are several designs and a lot more colour options," she said.
Patcharapimol Youngprapakorn, the executive director of Samutprakarn Crocodile Farm and Zoo Co Ltd, the world's biggest crocodile farm with 30,000 crocodiles, said a more pressing concern for those in the crocodile leather industry is that local businesses are slashing prices far too low just to compete with each other.
Producers that dump prices to compete with each other are only killing themselves in the long run when there is no reason whatsoever to slash prices, as the number of crocodiles is limited, she said.
Ms Patcharapimol said local producers should not focus on small profit but instead must take advantage of the availability of crocodile leather in the country to create value-added and quality products.
Product quality also depends on the tanning of the skin. Thailand is known for providing matte finishes.
When it comes to the more value-added glazed finish, however, the country is far behind Singapore, which houses the world's biggest crocodile-skin tanning sites.
A representative of Sriracha Farm (Asia) Co Ltd said so far Thailand has only been able to achieve 70% of what Singapore can do in terms of tanning.
"We don't have the funds to invest in research and development.
You need the right combination of chemicals to get to that stage, but we don't have that know-how yet," said the representative.
Thailand's crocodile leather industry is also faced with rising production costs, up by 10% since last year.
Ms Jirachayanan said this includes everything in the production chain, from the cost of food for the crocodiles to the cost of chemicals used for tanning and items such as zippers and fabrics.
Another difficulty is competing with fake leather products that emboss a crocodile pattern into cow leather.
These days, fake producers have become so advanced that it is very difficult even for experts to see which is real one and which is fake, so there is little chance that customers can detect it.
Crocodiles must be at least four years old before they can be harvested. Special care must be given in the first couple of years, as the animals tend to die easily. It takes two crocodiles to make a 35-centimetre bag.
Leather from the crocodile belly can fetch twice as much as the backstrap or the more bony leather.
"It's not easy to rear crocodiles. Sometimes they fight with each other, thereby scratching the leather and affecting the price, so we have to make sure that adequate living space is provided in addition to a clean and quiet environment, which they like," said Ms Patcharapimol.
In addition to bags, tanned crocodile skins can also be used in furniture and upholstery.
There are currently five leading crocodile farms in the country, with about 20 well-regarded companies that provide ready-made goods.