UK-listed performance materials provider Low & Bonar plans to expand its investment in China this year by building a second production line in Changzhou, East China’s Jiangsu Province to meet growing local demand, CEO Brett Simpson, told the Global Times on Thursday.
He said that the second production line will come into operation in early 2018. The company built the Changzhou facility in 2015.
Low & Bonar makes performance materials which can be used to make carpet tiles, roof ventilation systems, filtration facilities and erosion control.
According to Simpson, the company has benefited a lot from the fundamental trends in China as the country shifts from an export-driven economy to a local consumption one. For example, continuing urbanization boosts the need for commercial buildings and related services, and this factor has helped expand China’s demand for products provided by Low & Bonar.
“Demand has been growing steadily in China since we came here,” Simpson said.
Simpson said that the output of the Changzhou facility is almost entirely sold to domestic customers, and about 10 percent of the company’s revenue came from China in the past year.
He also said that doing business in China is no harder than doing business elsewhere, so there’s no need to exaggerate the obstacles that foreign companies might meet during their exploration of the Chinese market.
He said that certain challenges exist, such as wage inflation and insufficient intellectual property protection, but those challenges also exist elsewhere.
“In the past, chemical companies were afraid of bringing advanced technology to China. But now, the market is so competitive, and you can’t help your business by putting less than your most competitive capability in the Chinese market,” he said.