SCG Ceramics to increase prices amid energy burden
SCG Ceramics Plc, a subsidiary of SCG Cement-Building Materials Co, plans to increase its product prices again this year after months of rising electricity and gas prices.
Last year the company hiked product prices by around 10%, said Nampol Malichai, managing director of SCG Ceramics.
"The company needs to increase prices because it cannot shoulder heavier costs, though we managed to improve production efficiency and use more renewable energy," he said.
SCG Ceramics expects energy costs to keep rising in the first quarter of this year, dealing a further blow to the ceramics industry.
Energy costs have increased since the start of the Russia-Ukraine war. The Thai government's decision to increase the power tariff also put more financial strain on the company.
This led SCG Ceramics to invest more in renewable energy, especially increased use of rooftop solar panels at its factories.
The electricity generation capacity of its rooftop solar panels is 25 megawatts.
The company will continue to increase the capacity to relieve the impact of higher energy costs, said Mr Nampol.
SCG Ceramics is also conducting a feasibility study on an investment in the electric vehicle (EV) charging facility business to serve the growing EV industry in Thailand.
The company expects the ceramics industry to be affected by high inflation and weak consumer purchasing power as the Thai economy has yet to fully recover.
The market value of Thailand's ceramics industry is around 30 billion baht a year, said SCG Ceramics.
"Real estate development projects from large developers will boost ceramic product use, offsetting slower demand in many provinces because of economic downturns and floods," he said.
SCG Ceramics projects revenue growth this year of 5% year-on-year as its product prices rise and it attempts to improve business operation efficiency.
In 2022, the company posted total revenue growth of 17% to 13.2 billion baht.
Its profit, excluding key non-recurring items, fell by 139% year-on-year to 469 million baht.
SCG Ceramics is allocating an investment budget of 450-500 million baht this year, up from 380 million in 2022, for new machine purchases and the expansion of its dealers' stores.