Singapore-based Sunningdale Tech Ltd. is building a dedicated facility in Suzhou, China, to manufacture medical-device components.
``Many of the health-care companies who are our customers are concentrated in Suzhou and have requested the group to be present in that vicinity,'' said Koh Boon Hwee, executive chairman and chief executive officer.
The S$6 million (US$3.9 million) plant, which will open in July 2008, is being built near Sunningdale's existing facility in Suzhou, he said. The company is investing S$1.5 million (US$980,000) to build another plant for its health-care segment in Singapore. That site is on schedule to be completed in June. Sunningdale's manufacturing operations include product design, mold making, injection and two-shot molding and subassembly.
``We are optimistic about the health-care segment and expect the segment to contribute more strongly in 2008,'' Koh said. Because Sunningdale expects production for new health-care contracts to kick in during the third quarter of this year, that business will not contribute much to the firm's 2007 financial performance, he said.
Sunningdale's sales for the first quarter grew 7 percent to S$93.7 million (US$61.4 million), compared with last year's period. That growth, mainly due to increased sales in the firm's consumer/information technology segment, was partially offset by lower sales in its telecommunications business.
First-quarter profit was S$2.6 million (US$1.7 million), up from S$500,000 (US$328,000) for last year's quarter.
However, quarterly gross profit fell 6.8 percent to S$14.5 million (US$9.5 million) from a year ago. Gross margin during the quarter was lower at 15.5 percent, compared with 17.8 percent a year ago, because of continued pricing pressure across all segments and the weakening of the U.S. dollar against the Singapore dollar.