Tien Wah to tap into food packaging in Vietnam

By NUR HAZIQAH A MALEK / Graphic By TMR

Tien Wah Press Holdings Bhd plans to leverage on the food packaging business in Vietnam to diversify its business.

Its chairman Steven Yen Wen Hwa said the company is looking into utilising its existing capacity to move into the food packaging industry in the country, such as beer labels and mooncake packaging.

“We are looking into food packaging in Vietnam, such as beer labels which may begin as early as this year, while mooncakes may take some time, to begin next year.

“We will still focus on tobacco packaging though,” he said at the company’s AGM in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Yen also said there are not many competitors in its main business and there are no bad debt concerns due to the company’s main dealings with big multinational tobacco companies.

The company terminated its joint venture with Vietnam’s Dong Nai Food Industrial Corp in March this year due to it not complying with the agreed minimum printed carton volumes of tobacco packaging.

Meanwhile, Yen said the company expects its business in Dubai to kick off this year, upon moving forward from redundancies resulted in its printing asset’s closing in Malaysia.

“Our planned market expansion into the Middle East resulted in our presence in Dubai which has started commercial production with our cigarette-related customers,” he said.

He added that there are almost over 20 tobacco-related customers totalling up in Dubai, which comprise small companies.

Currently, the company has 13 gravure printers in total, with a utilisation rate of 52% as of April, of which it has acquired two more for its business in Indonesia.

Yen said the company is putting its property segment on hold.

“Due to the current environment, we have decided to put it on hold until the environment looks better for us,” he said.

For the financial year ended Dec 31, 2017, the company posted a revenue of RM417.3 million, 27% higher than the previous year due to its newly acquired foreign subsidiary in Indonesia, PT Bintang Pesona Jagat.

Approximately 87.8% of its total revenue was contributed by its tobacco customers, while the rest came from general packaging for non-tobacco customers.