July 1, 2014 - AGC announces that its consolidated subsidiary AGC Glass Europe has signed a letter of intent with Obeikan Glass Company to establish a solar control glass coating joint venture. The processing line for temperable solar control glass coating will be built in Yanbu, Saudi Arabia. Operations are scheduled to start in early 2016.
In recent years, the architectural glass market in the Middle East has grown at an annual rate of about 4%. In particular, demand is increasing for solar control glass that can block sunlight and significantly improve the energy-saving performance of buildings and its growth rate is estimated to exceed the market growth rate. As a result, demand for high-performance architectural glass is projected to rise continuously in the region. "Having a float glass plant with a glass coating plant downstream from it on the same site will help us to keep tight control of quality, to optimize the production and logistics costs, and to achieve higher margins" explains Abdallah Obeikan, CEO of Obeikan Investment Group.
AGEU and Obeikan Glass are expected to generate synergies that can be applied to the high-performance architectural glass business in the Middle East. According to Jean-François Heris, CEO of AGEU, "This joint venture not only assists in the selective roll-out of our own technology, already enriched through our recent alliance with the German company Interpane, it also helps to extend the distribution of our range of coated products developed through advanced research."
The AGC Group positions its Second Round of Globalization initiative for business expansion in emerging markets as a key pillar of its growth strategy. The Group will continue to establish and strengthen foundations for growth in emerging markets by steadily capturing increasing demand, and contribute to the development of emerging regions through the provision of high-value-added products.