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Kimberly-Clark seeks bigger footprint in CLMV countries

Kimberly-Clark Professional Thailand, a maker of tissue and safety-related products, plans to tap business opportunities in CLMV (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam), targeting factories and hotels.

General manager and director Karun Sangfai said Kimberly-Clark was looking for a distributor for its products in Myanmar, which has opened up to various foreign businesses and factories. In Vietnam, the company has four distributors in Danang, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

The target client groups are factories and five-star hotels such as Marriott and Novotel.

In Cambodia, Kimberly-Clark has a distributor in Phnom Penh, but Siem Reap, which is popular with tourists, also offers attractive business opportunities.

In Laos, Kimberly-Clark has a distributor in Vientiane and is seeking more for Savannakhet and Pakse.

Karun hopes CLMV will account for 30 per cent of Kimberly-Clark's sales in the next five to seven years versus 2 per cent now.

This year, the company has projected sales of its tissue products of about Bt2.5 billion, up 20 per cent compared with last year's 15-per-cent growth.

It hopes to achieve annual tissue sales of about Bt5 billion within five years, with hotels and factories each accounting for 20 per cent, followed by hospitals and offices at 15 per cent each, and others (airports, schools, restaurants, rental and retail vendors) making up the remaining 30 per cent.

Kimberly-Clark hopes its focus on factories and the industrial sector will raise the sales share of this segment from 20 per cent to 25-30 per cent within the next three years.

The overall picture of Kimberly-Clark Professional's market for its various products this year will likely be flat at Bt4.9 billion, slightly down from last year's Bt5-billion figure. This is attributed to several factors in the first half of 2014.

Kimberly-Clark holds 45-50 per cent of the tissue market in the industrial sector.


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