TPBI eyes e-commerce to aid packaging

TPBI eyes e-commerce to aid packaging

SET-listed TPBI Plc, a plastic packaging maker, expects to see total revenue in 2017 grow by 5-10%, thanks to rising demand for special plastic packaging for the delivery of e-commerce products as online retail grows substantially.

Chief executive Somsak Borrisuttanakul said the e-commerce trend has helped raise demand for packaging that needs to be light but strong enough to be used for delivering products, providing room for the company to grow concurrently.

He said the company has set aside 20-30 million baht to upgrade the efficiency of its machines to produce more special-grade plastic for packaging. The project is expected to be completed and begin commercial operations by the first quarter of this year.

The company also plans to produce more bio-plastic products to meet rising demand for eco-friendly bags and packaging. TPBI is still in the designing stage for those products. It is expected to start producing the bio-plastic and sell it to major customers by the end of the year.

"This year is one of self-adjustment as TPBI is learning and repositioning itself to be in line with changing demand. Demand for special-grade plastic to serve e-commerce is growing strongly and we plan to capitalise on it," he said.

Apart from adjusting its products, Mr Somsak said the company is also undergoing a manufacturing upgrade by adopting more robotic arms and increasing automation for its production lines and warehouses to streamline the production process, reducing the workforce and ultimately cutting labour costs.

Mr Somsak said TPBI has invested another 800 million baht in producing a different plastic product for consumer goods packaging. The construction and installation of new machines is set to be completed by the first quarter and is expected to help generate additional revenue to be booked for this year.

The company has recently increased its production of high-value products, with special-grade plastic for medical equipment.

This follows the success of its blood bags, which have been well-received by the Thai Red Cross Society.

TPBI has also developed solar rooftops for its production facilities in Rayong and Nakorn Pathom with capacity of two megawatts each.

The solar rooftops, worth 110 million baht, cut power costs by 30-40% per month, saving around 10 million baht a year.

TPBI posted a net profit of 97.3 million baht in the third quarter of 2016, an increase from 89.2 million in the same period of 2015.

For the first nine months of 2016, the company had a net profit of 277 million baht, compared with 261 million in the same period of the previous year.

TPBI shares closed yesterday on the Stock Exchange of Thailand at 14.90 baht, unchanged, in trade worth 17.8 million baht.

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