Telecommunications industry molder Perlos Corp. has doubled its capacity to serve mobile phone customers in China, creating more than 200 jobs with the launch of a $5 million, 115,000-square-foot plant in Beijing.
Perlos of NurmijÃ¤rvi, Finland, began running the new facility in October. The plant serves Nokia Oy and other telecommunications customers.
The Beijing plant is equipped with injection presses, as well as assembly, painting, printing and metal-stamping sections. A Perlos spokesman would not reveal the number or type of injection machines.
Perlos, which launched its first Chinese plant in Guangzhou in 2000, is stressing the ``global significance'' of the Chinese mobile phone market. Other than China, the only other country where Perlos has more than one plant is Finland, said President Timo LeinilÃ¤.
``In [the] future, China will be one of our key growth areas, even though, at the moment, most of our production capacity is located in Europe,'' he said. LeinilÃ¤ is stepping down as president in January and will be replaced by Isto Hantila.
Meantime, Perlos has cut back part of the 400-strong labor force at its pharmaceutical products plant in Kontiolahti, Finland, to reflect lower-than-expected demand this year. Back in August, Perlos had announced it planned 70 layoffs there with additional cuts likely.
Earlier this year Perlos had predicted a 10 percent rise in pharmaceutical-related sales, but now the company has revised the estimate and is figuring on no change from 2002 levels. That sector accounts for 12 percent of Perlos' total sales.
Perlos, which recorded annual sales in 2002 of 365 million euros ($366 million), also launched production at a new electronic and telecommunications component molding plant in Manaus, Brazil, earlier this year.
In addition, it just completed a 2 million euro ($2.3 million) clean room upgrade at a plant in Sunderland, England. The operation formerly did electronics and telecommunications work, but now will become Perlos' second facility dedicated to pharmaceutical products.
Perlos also has plants in Sweden, Hungary, Malaysia, Singapore and Fort Worth, Texas.