Malaysian rubber glove producer optimistic for robust growth

UPDATED: 11:30, June 25, 2007

Malaysian rubber glove producer Supermax, the second biggest one in the world, is ready to achieve up to 35 percent growth in both revenue and profit in 2007, local media reported Monday.

The optimism is based on the company's robust growth over the past six years, riding on the world's voracious appetite for rubber gloves, said Datuk Seri Stanley Thai Kim Sim, the group managing director and chief executive officer.

"Global demand for rubber gloves continues to surge due to greater awareness of health standards," Thai told the New Straits Times in a recent interview.

Supermax will boost marketing initiatives in fast-emerging markets such as China and India as well as introduce innovative glove products.

The world's rubber glove demand has been increasing at an annual average rate of 12 percent, especially in the consumer usage segment, according to Thai.

The company will continue to supply this segment as well as the other traditional secotrs such as hospital, medical, food, industrial, scientific laboratories, dental and home healthcare, which will also continue to register faster growth.

Supermax plans to spend 106.2 million ringgit (31.2 million U.S. dollars) this year on its various expansion initiatives.

As a combined group, Supermax owns and operates 11 factories and spends 800 million ringgit (235.3 million U.S. dollars) a year on research.

The 11 factories have a total of 241 production lines running at full capacity and churning out some 26 million pieces of rubber gloves a year, commanding one fifth of the world's market of 120 billion pieces a year.

Malaysia is the world's largest rubber glove producer, and half of its products are consumed by the United States.

Source: Xinhua

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