Responding to telecommunications customer demand in Asia, Swedish component injection molder Nolato AB plans to establish a new manufacturing plant in Malaysia.
Nolato Telecom also plans new investment in its profitable 4-year-old production plant in Beijing. This project involves expansion of mold-making and painting capacity. The site more than doubled its sales to customers in the mobile-phone sector in the first half of last year.
Nolato Beijing has grown steadily since it was established and the workforce expanded, with another 500 hired in final six months of 2004 to reach 1,600, according to Torekov, Sweden-based Nolato.
Growth in China has led to cutbacks at Nolato's European operations. In April 2004 100 jobs were cut at the Nolato Alpha facility in Kristianstad, Sweden. A further 32 employees were cut in February as Nolato Beijing expanded. Today, roughly two-thirds of Nolato's workforce is now employed outside Sweden, according to Nolato.
In Malaysia, Nolato Telecom intends to launch its new facility in the capital city of Kuala Lumpur, initially with a logistics and assembly unit. This will serve the cellular phone industry in the region.
``Customers that have their final assembly in Malaysia have expressed a strong desire that we expand operations close by in order to further enhance our partnership,'' said Nolato Telecom Chief Executive Officer Tommy Johansson.
Reporting strong group earnings for the first half of 2005, Nolato President and CEO Georg Brunstam said: ``The new logistics and assembly unit in Malaysia will be a good complement to our production units in China and Europe.''
The Asian expansion announcement coincided with news that the Swedish group's Nolato Medical business plans to hire 20 more workers at its facility in Lomma, Sweden. This follows an outsourcing deal the firm signed with Danish pharmaceutical group Novo Nordisk to produce the InnoLet insulin pen. The device is designed for insulin patients with limited vision or dexterity.
This agreement will boost Nolato Medical's annual sales by around 15 percent, according to Nolato.