Taiwanese automotive plastics processor Tong Yang Industrial Co. Ltd., which claims to be one of the world's largest makers of plastic aftermarket parts, is adding a new molding plant and a research and development center in Taiwan this year.
The plants are part of $100 million in new investments in 2014, including adding capacity at several plastic bumper manufacturing factories in mainland China, where it also supplies parts for new vehicles to Chinese and global car makers.
Company officials did not give details of the expansions, but Crispin Wu, Tong Yang's CEO, told the Taiwan-based China Economic News Service that the company plans to invest more than $300 million in the next three years to be ready for growth in global car markets.
The company also sees opportunities as insurance companies in mature markets like the United States and Europe push the use of aftermarket parts in repairs as a way to save money, rather than using more expensive original equipment replacement parts, Tong Yang said.
Wu told CENS in the May 30 article that in the United States, for example, 20 percent of insurance claims use aftermarket parts now, compared with 15 percent before 2009. The U.S. is the company's largest single market, accounting for 31 percent of sales in 2012.
Tong Yang, which is based in the city of Tainan, has 14 injection and blow molding factories in mainland China, Taiwan and Italy, along with facilities making sheet metal components, molds and decorating plastic parts. It employs more than 7,000 globally.
Customers include Chinese joint ventures Chang'An Suzuki and Chang'An Ford, First Auto Works and several Chinese ventures of Nissan and Toyota, according to Tong Yang's website.
In an email to Plastics News, Tong Yang confirmed that the expansion details in the CENS story were correct but declined to answer further questions.
Tong Yang told CENS in a late 2013 article that it had capacity for 6.6 million plastic bumpers in Taiwan, with plans to add an additional production line this year.
It said that when its three expanded plastic bumper factories in mainland China become fully operational in 2014, the company will have capacity for nearly 4 million bumpers a year there, or about 20 percent of China's current annual demand.
The publicly-traded company reported that 2013 sales rose 15 percent to 19.62 billion Taiwan dollars (US$647.4 million), although that was still below its 2009 sales of T$20.9 billion (US$685.5 million).