Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia - A new plant that Jeddah-based United Carton Industries Company (UCIC) is building will significantly boost production capacity and market share. The new unit, expected to be operational in 2Q14, will have capacity of 120,000 tons per year. The company focuses on high-quality corrugated solutions for specialized and customized packaging needs. UCIC has three plants in operation, two of which are in Jeddah and one in Riyadh, and total annual capacity stands in excess of 280,000 tons.
"We currently hold approximately a 42% share of the domestic corrugated packaging market. Our focus is the domestic sector and more than 95% of sales comes from within Saudi Arabia. The new plant will enable us to step up overseas sales to some extent, but the home market will continue to remain our main priority. The Kingdom produces 600,000 tons of corrugated packaging from more than 10 manufacturers," a spokesperson for the UCIC said.
Use of modern processes has made the company more attractive and competitive. UCIC has adopted flexographic printing technology to print up to six colors and the latest laser technology for making die cutting tools. Additionally, all press and design capabilities are built in-house, facilitating high-quality printing and shorter lead times.
The new plant, being built on a 97,000-sq-m site, is an important element of UCIC's growth strategy which looks to boost market share and volumes through better productivity and investments. Installation in recent years of a new Mitsubishi Heavy Industries 2.8 m corrugator and deployment of new converting lines have significantly helped meet customer requirements.
UCIC's product range includes RSC boxes, wraparounds, trays, jumbo boxes, shelf-ready boxes, high graphic cartons, and floor stands. The fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) market contributed more than 70% of the 2012 turnover of over SR830 million ($221.3 million). UCIC is keeping an eye on new packaging trends and requirements. "With the retail sector changing, consumer companies have started focusing on secondary packaging, demanding high-quality printing to match their branding and merchandising needs," it says. Its customers include multinationals and some domestic businesses in the industrial and agricultural sectors.
Today, over 80% of the paper it uses for manufacturing boxes is recycled with this material coming from local and international sources, especially Europe.