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KCE expects revenue boost from new plant

Electronics firm signs loan deal for factory that would double its capacity

Listed company KCE Electronics expects its revenue and profit to reach new heights after it increases production capacity with a new plant.

The new factory will double the company's production capacity from 2.1 million square feet of printed circuit boards (PCB) a month, helping increase monthly sales revenue to Bt1.5 billion from Bt850 million now, said executive chairman Bancha Ongkosit.

The company yesterday signed an eight-year loan agreement with Bangkok Bank for Bt4.15 billion to fund the construction of the new factory at Ladkrabang Industrial Estate.

The output from the first phase of the new plant will be seen in the third quarter of next year and the final phase will be fully operational by the end of 2016.

By 2016, KCE will be the largest PCB producer and exporter in Southeast Asia and will rank in the world's top-three producers of PCBs for automobiles, with expected market share of 16 per cent, the company said.

Currently it ranks fifth with a market share of 8 per cent.

Bancha said KCE's revenue this year should exceed Bt9 billion, up 35 per cent from last year against the previous growth target of 25 per cent, after the company acquired new clients such as Panasonic and Sumitomo.

"We expect revenue and profit from 2014 onwards will reach new highs because of the [increased] production capacity. The global economic recovery and new orders from existing and new clients will boost our revenue as well," he said.

Revenue growth next year is forecast at 15 per cent, half of which will be from new clients.

KCE is on an upward trend thanks to the rising demand for circuit boards for cars and electric cars, he said. There will be increased usage of electronic and computer parts in automobiles, expanding the market further for KCE to exploit.

He noted that the value of this market had increased to US$4 billion (Bt128 billion) from $10 million 25 years ago.

When asked about the current political climate and its potential effects on profits, Bancha said KCE had been through worse political turmoil in Thailand in the past and came out on top, so he was not worried. Since KCE is an export-oriented firm, with 97 per cent of its sales outside Thailand, current and potential clients will not be disrupted by the protesters or the political strife.

Meanwhile, the baht is getting weaker against the US dollar, providing additional profits for KCE, as all of its sales are in dollars, Bancha said.

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