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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs    18 May 2012

Thai company targeting Asean

18 May 2012

Satien Stainless Steel Plc, the producer of Zebra-brand kitchenware, is expanding capacity to meet rising demand in the Thai market and in anticipation of new demand from the Asean Economic Community (AEC) after 2015.

Ekachai Youngvanich, a vice-chairman of the company's executive committee, said with the growing demand for kitchenware products domestically and internationally, the company is planning to spend 50 million baht to increase its production capacity 10%.

"While the recent increase in the daily minimum wage will affect the company's operating costs, it will also help our business at the same time. With higher spending power, consumers will have more demand for our kitchenware," he said.

Satien Youngvanich founded the company in 1966 as a commercial welder. It entered the kitchenware market with the introduction of a stainless steel spoon in 1968.

The company currently sells a wide range of kitchen-related products including pots, pans, appliances, tableware, tools, food warmers, shabu shabu pans and serving bowls.

Exports are currently 30% of the company's 1.7 billion baht in annual sales.

Satien Stainless Steel hopes to grow its sales 5-10% this year.

To better manage costs, the company will install over 50 robots at its production facilities in Rayong for heavy or unsafe jobs. The goal is 20% higher production efficiency and it plans to eventually automate all production lines to deal with the labour shortage.

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