Chinese WPC startup sees opportunities locally

By Steve Toloken
Staff Reporter / Asia Bureau Chief

Published: November 6, 2012 6:00 am ET

Zieggy Zhang, GM of Ningbo Helong, at the company's factory in Ningbo (Plastics News photo by Steve Toloken)

Related to this story

Topics Materials, Suppliers, Construction, Consumer Products

NINGBO, CHINA (Nov. 6, 12:15 p.m. ET) — Hoping to take advantage of China’s growing local market for wood-plastic composite decking and other products, a startup Chinese manufacturer has invested 90 million Chinese yuan ($14.3 million) in a new extrusion factory in Ningbo. 

Ningbo Helong New Material Co. Ltd. opened the factory in May, and plans to focus a majority of its initial capacity of 44 million pounds a year on China’s domestic market because it sees growing familiarity and acceptance of WPC, said General Manager Zieggy Zhang.

“In past years people in China did not know about WPC but in recent years WPC factories have shown their products to people with advertisements and [trade] shows, and more and more people know about WPC,” Zhang said, in an interview at the China Sixth International Forum of WPC, held Nov. 3-4 in Ningbo.

He said about 60 percent of its initial production will be targeted to the domestic market, which puts the company somewhat at odds with the traditional export focus of Chinese WPC manufacturers like Helong, which use polyethylene as their main plastic raw material.

Historically exports have accounted for about 70 percent of the industry’s sales, but the domestic share of the Chinese production has been growing.

The main driver for China’s domestic wood-plastic composites market is government projects like parks and public buildings, rather than individual homeowners or buildings as in North America, which is the world’s largest market for WPC, Zhang said.

Also, a high percentage of Chinese urban residents live in apartments, and those in single-family homes that might be potential customers for decking or other outdoor products are in rural areas and generally don’t have as much money as city dwellers, Zhang said.

Helong is targeting about 50 million yuan ($7.9 million) in sales this year and 120 million yuan ($19 million) in 2013. It has 21 Chinese-made extrusion lines at the Ningbo factory, Zhang said.

The company plans to expand capacity to 110 million pounds a year within two years, and as it expands it wants to have its sales evenly split between domestic and international business, Zhang said. It’s targeting Asia and Europe as its main export markets, he said.

The company’s raw materials are recycled PE, sourced mainly from Central and South America and South Africa, along with either wood flour or rice husk.

Helong held a factory open house Nov. 4 in connection with the Ningbo forum, which was organized by the Wood Plastic Composites Committee of the Beijing-based China Plastic Processing Industry Association.


Comments

Chinese WPC startup sees opportunities locally

By Steve Toloken
Staff Reporter / Asia Bureau Chief

Published: November 6, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Prices trending up for some recycled resins

July 24, 2014 1:27 pm ET

Plastics News is correcting prices for recycled grades of several commodity resins on this week's resin pricing chart.    More

Meredian merging with Danimer Scientific

July 24, 2014 1:59 pm ET

Bioplastics maker Meredian Inc. is merging with its sister firm, Danimer Scientific LLC.    More

Image

US Bioplastics receives funding to bring Gatoresin to the market

July 24, 2014 1:44 pm ET

Materials maker U.S. Bioplastics is hoping its Gatoresin product will take a bite out of the bioplastics market, thanks to funding from a state...    More

Image

Injection molder, recycler Polyvulc USA puts itself up for sale

July 24, 2014 12:41 pm ET

Fred Farrell and Larry Lambiotte, founders of Polyvulc USA Inc. and its subsidiaries Polyvulc Tire Recycling Llc and Winnsboro Rubber Recycling LLC,...    More

Image

BASF posts growth in second quarter

July 24, 2014 11:08 am ET

German chemical giant, BASF SE, has announced a 1 percent growth in sales for the second quarter of 2014 compared to the same period in 20...    More

Market Reports

Injection Molders Market Report & Ranking 2014

This special package contains our 132-page 2014 Market Report on the Injection Molding segment and our exclusive 2014 RANKINGS database of 500+ Injection Molders for a discounted package price.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Market Review & Outlook 2014

This special report from Plastics News examines the North American plastics recycling industry and provides insight into indicators that impact market viability, including Resin pricing trends for virgin and recycled market material and historical Resin production trends for post- consumer and industrial waste.

Learn more

Shale Gas Market - Analysis of North American Region

This report highlights the impact of shale-based natural gas on the North American plastics market and features an in-depth analysis of production trends in the United States during 2013 and a forecast for 2014 and beyond.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events