MANILA, Philippines - Thai conglomerate Siam Cement Group is allocating $70 million for research and development programs to boost its leadership position in Southeast Asia.
SCG, which owns the Philippines' biggest ceramic tile company Mariwasa Siam Ceramics, sees more room for growth in the region.
In a statement, SCG president and CEO Kan Trakulhoon said the conglomerate is keen on expanding the company's operations in ASEAn.
SCG's regional sales have been growing by 39% annually, with consolidated sales of over $1 billion. ASEAN sales account for 8% of SCG's total sales revenues.
In the Philippines, SCG sales revenues hit $142 million in 2012, a 50% growth from the previous year. This after the company consolidated the operations of its ceramic tiles business, Mariwasa Siam Ceramics, in April 2012.
Kan sees 2013 as a better year for the company, which will celebrate its centenary.
"With its vision to become an ASEAN sustainable business leader, SCG will pursue its major strategy vigorously this year, which is the expansion of investments in ASEAN and continuously leading the way towards developing high value added products and services," Kan said.
Last year, SCG posted 11% higher sales to $13.11 million on higher product prices and volume growth. However, profit was slightly down to $759 million due largely to a slowdown in the chemicals trough industry, inventory losses in the second quarter and the unexpected shutdown of a subsidiary.
SCG, ranked the 2nd biggest company in Thailand in 2011, has businesses in chemicals, paper, cement, building materials and distribution.