Japanese valve maker expands Korean production, eyes US market

May 17, 2007 – Vtex Corp., a unit of Hitachi Zosen that makes specialty valves for semiconductor equipment, will spend 100 million yen (~US $831,000) to tool up a five-year-old maintenance location in Seoul, South Korea, in order to take aim on new business in the US, notes the Nikkei Business Daily.

The facility, with cleanrooms, warehouse, cleaning equipment, and testing facilities, currently churns out 30 small vacuum valves each month for use in semiconductor equipment, but Vtex plans to ramp that to 80 units/month this summer and market the valves to US customers.

Eventually the company wants to produce 150 units/month at the Seoul site, 20% of which will go to Samsung and local firms, and the rest reserved for export. Vtex also wants to double its percentage of sales from overseas customers to 20% of total sales, which are currently around 5 billion yen ($41.5 million), the paper notes.


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