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Anyone who uses everyday companions such as smartphones, tablets, smartwatches or fitness trackers is relying on good connections in both senses of the word. The popular electronic devices not only allow us to communicate with the outside world but are also held together by a number of precision adhesive tapes. Many of these little high-performance wonders are manufactured in Asia. And as the demand for these devices is growing worldwide, so is the need for high-tech adhesive solutions. Therefore, we have increased our capacities in the ’Middle Kingdom’: On April 2, we celebrated the expansion of the plant that had been opened in 2005.
At the opening ceremony, Frank Kolmorgen, President and Regional Manager of tesa Greater China, praised the efforts: "Despite the difficult conditions resulting from the Corona pandemic, a 50-strong international project team managed the completion excellently." The heart of the new building with a total area of 15,000 m2 and an investment of 32 million Euro is one of the world's most modern clean room units for the production of precision adhesive tapes.
"With our innovative adhesive tapes, we can play a decisive role in shaping the further development of products and manufacturing processes in many industries."
"This represents an important component in order to increase our 'footprint' in Asia and to strengthen our market position in Greater China as well as in the surrounding countries, such as Korea and Vietnam," explains Dr. Norman Goldberg, CEO of tesa SE. "With our innovative adhesive tapes, we can play a decisive role in shaping the further development of products and manufacturing processes in many industries," says Goldberg.
Suzhou Site Manager Suthesh Kumar emphasizes: "We can now strengthen our position not only as an innovative supplier, but also as an attractive employer. It's an exciting task for the employees to produce precision adhesive tapes using one of the most modern systems in the world."
different tapes can be inside a single smartphone.
The close and trusting cooperation with key customers from the electronics and automotive industries is an important competitive factor for tesa. Frank Kolmorgen knows: "In China, the future is created every day. The quantitative and qualitative increase in our capacities allows us to react even faster to the elevated local customer demand and to sustainably increase our market share." The dynamism is particularly high in the consumer electronics segment. For example, often several smartphone generations are launched on the market every year, with changes in functionality and design. A smartphone may contain up to 70 different tesa tapes.
Because speed and drive are so elevated, tesa believes: After the expansion is before the expansion. On the same day of the opening ceremony, the foundation stone for a second construction phase was laid in Suzhou, with additional offices and areas for our already successful Customer Solution Center. There, tesa works closely together with customers to develop tailor-made solutions and to offer trainings on all aspects of tape applications.
So-called Optically Clear Adhesives (OCA) are highly transparent, wafer-thin foils that are used, for example, to attach displays to smartphones or tablets. These tapes are manufactured in clean room units, where the room air is 100 times cleaner than on a mountain top. At the Suzhou plant, tesa produces, among other things, OCAs that are significantly thinner than a human hair.
But that's not all: The construction of another large plant in Vietnam with an investment of 55 million Euro is already in preparation. Today, tesa generates more than 30% of its sales in Asia. "One of our goals is to produce in the region for the region in order to keep delivery times, transport routes and costs as well as CO2 pollution caused by transport routes as low as possible." The plant expansion is an important milestone in order to continue the success story of the company," predicts Stefan Schmidt, who, as Executive Vice President Supply Network, is responsible for the international network of all tesa production sites.
In 2005, tesa opened its plant in Suzhou, China, in the immediate vicinity of many manufacturers and their suppliers in the electronics and automotive sectors. Because the plant would reach its limits by 2025 at the latest, the international adhesive tape manufacturer decided to significantly expand its capacities. The foundation stone was laid in 2019. More than 300 colleagues are currently working at the tesa Site Suzhou. Another 80 jobs will be created in the medium term. More than 700 employees work for tesa throughout the region Greater China – in addition to the plant, there are also central functions in Shanghai as well as eleven sales offices. Besides Suzhou, tesa also operates plants in Concagno (Italy), Hamburg and Offenburg (Germany) as well as Sparta (USA). A new plant is being planned in Vietnam.