Premium Beauty News - The start of your aluminium-processing plant and of your fourth plastic injection factory barely completed in China, 2015 also promises to be a "rich year» in investments and acquisitions?
Eddy Wu - Indeed, thanks to the support of our financial sponsor, TPG Capital, who is stating our common ambition to continue to work towards positioning HCP Packaging as a leading player in the beauty packaging industry in the world, we are looking forward to strengthening our presence in the coming months. With industrial investments, of course, but with the right kind of investment too. In China for example, our fourth plant ideally reflects the new industrial face of HCP. It is, as you know, a unit where all the production flows have been optimized to the maximum in order to not only increase our global competitiveness but also to strongly improve the quality of our production. At a competitive level, it can be estimated that this factory employs, an equivalent level of production considered, almost 50% people less than a conventional factory. As you know China has to face the challenges generated by the expansion of its economy, which must be associated with the natural increase in wages. "China = cheap labour" is a concept doomed to fall into oblivion in the medium-term. In term of quality, the challenges that we are taking up in the area of automation and of improvement of industrial flows allows us in addition to reach always higher levels of quality.
Premium Beauty News - Your investment decisions in terms of production capacity differ depending on the regions where you operate?
Eddy Wu - That’s true. If in China we are continuing to invest in terms of volumes and quality, like for example with our plastic injection capacity but also with our production capacity of moulds (+ 30% next year) and in metallization/varnishing, the goal for the USA and Mexico is not necessarily to increase our capacity. What matters most in this region, it is our reactivity to customer requirements and the industrial proximity we offer the whole North American continent. This is also what will drive us to establish ourselves industrially in Eastern Europe. An operation, which is scheduled for the time being and according to our plans, next year.
Premium Beauty News - And commercially, what parts of the world do you favour most?
Eddy Wu - As usual, of course, the United States, Europe and China, but also other areas where finally our expertise and the quality of our productions are increasingly recognized, like for example and surprisingly, Japan (The Kose group has awarded us for the second consecutive year a prize for the excellence in our work). Brazil is obviously a country we are watching closely too.