TER HELL PLASTIC : Expansion in China

TER HELL PLASTIC, a company specialised in distribution, compounding and trading in plastics, has successfully concluded its entry into the Chinese market, made within just a few months. The company, with its headquarters in Herne (Germany) has been selling its products since the beginning of the year through four sales offices of the TER GROUP in Shanghai, Qingdao, Guangzhou and Hong Kong. They take care of comprehensive coverage of plastics customers in the key industrial regions in China. Apart from that, TER HELL PLASTIC has signed a co-operation agreement at the beginning of July, 2004, with Chinese compounder Su Chen in Suzhou.

These newly established business relationships of TER HELL PLASTIC will become evident at two large international meetings of the plastics industry: At K 2004, the company expects guests even from China on the stand (Hall 8, Stand 8 H 10). Local presence will also be shown later by TER HELL, together with Su Chen, at the 6th China Plastics Exhibition in Yuyao from 5th to 8th November 2004 (Stand A 2070). TER HELL’s presence at this exhibit in China will pave the way towards developing important business contacts that will enable further penetration of the Chinese market.

By moving into China, TER HELL PLASTIC is expanding into another extremely dynamic region, after successfully building up its Eastern European business during the past three years. The reasons are clear: Many TER HELL customers are transferring production activities to China, or are expanding their existing capacities there. They want to make use of both the favourable business conditions that this country offers, as well as the high growth potential of its markets.

With TER HELL PLASTIC, these companies can rely on a partner in Asia whom they have known with a long tradition in the European market. When, for example, a processor has to fulfil material specifications with its products made in China, TER HELL PLASTIC is able to supply the materials with the corresponding approvals locally. Through its four sales offices, TER HELL PLASTIC offers a variety of products from its own TEREZ® brand as well as other commodity and engineering plastics to the Chinese market.

Yet another reason for moving into China is the increasing demand of plastics producers who have long since operated globally. They are increasingly asking for the internationally oriented distributor – especially in Asia. Through its international structure, TER HELL PLASTIC provides new sales channels to achieve additional growth abroad.

What appears to be a huge step is, however, relatively simple for TER HELL PLASTIC, as the company can use structures that already exist: “Our parent company TER HELL & Co. GmbH has been successfully active in China over the past 20 years and has a well established organisation there”, explains General Manager Klaus Kleeb. “We utilise this organisation with immediate effect for our plastics group. The synergies within the TER Group provide us with a competitive advantage and make room for our principals to focus on their core competences”.

While the co-operation with Su Chen strengthens the sales structure of both contractual parties, TER HELL PLASTIC gains immediate access to a large number of medium-sized processors in China. Su Chen additionally possesses front-edge technical know-how in SBS and SEBS plastics*. Use of this knowledge sets the stage for TER HELL to further expand its strong position in Europe.

“The actual selling in China is done exclusively by our Chinese experts”, says Kleeb of the business philosophy of his company for this specific market. “The principle of ’think globally – act locally’ comes fully into play with our engagement in China. But it is also important that, through the support of the local employees in the sales offices, we are in the position to adapt ourselves right from the beginning to Chinese cultural customs.”

With its network of sales offices in China, TER HELL PLASTIC will focus on serving medium-sized customers. With this strategy, the company remains true to its traditional orientation towards small and medium-sized enterprises. Supply of plastics raw materials to medium-sized companies has always been the basis for the company’s business as a distributor. While this took place at the beginning almost exclusively on a national basis, TER HELL’s international business has gained increasingly in strategic importance during the past years.

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