Asahi Glass: first South American plant

Global leading glassmaker Asahi Glass Co. has announced that it will enter the Brazilian construction and automotive glass markets with a production base in the state of So Paulo involving an investme…

Global leading glassmaker Asahi Glass Co. has announced that it will enter the Brazilian construction and automotive glass markets with a production base in the state of So Paulo involving an investment of about JPY 40 billion. This first factory complex for Asahi in South America is scheduled to open in 2013, and will expand in stages until 2016. The company sees emerging economies as a key growth area and has already entered the markets of China, India and Russia, and others. It is now concentrating on Brazil, where demand for glass will grow as the country prepares to host the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics. The new production facility, which will have about 500 employees, will have an annual output capacity of 220,000 tons of float glass and, by 2016, enough automotive glass for 500,000 vehicles. Asahi Glass had already invested in a Brazilian glassmaker in 1998 but dissolved the partnership later. The Brazilian glass market is now dominated by a 50-50 joint venture between Nippon Sheet Glass Co. subsidiary Pilkington Plc and France“s Saint-Gobain SA, along with Guardian Industries Corp. of the US.