Toray Expanding Air Filter Business in Korea With New JV

Toray Industries, Inc. will establish a joint-venture company in Korea together with MCM Co., Ltd., a Chung Ho Nais Group company that is engaged in the sales of water purifiers and air cleaners.

The company will be capitalized at 6 billion won (about 600 million Japanese yen), with MCM having a 60% stake and Toray investing 40%.

Named M&T Engineering Co., Ltd., the new JV will combine the assembling and processing as well as automation expertise of MCM with Toray’s integrated design and development technology starting from fibers and filter materials to assembled units, so as to build a local production setup for high-performance filters necessary to expand business in Korea, as well as supplying to Korean manufacturers with global presence.

The Chung Ho Nais Group has a high share of the Korean water purifier market, and has a broad business base with sales to major global players in the country in addition to exports to some 60 countries.

Toray has been producing nonwoven fabrics for air filters since 2012 at Toray Fibers (Nantong) Co., Ltd. (TFNL), its fiber production base in China, building a local production and supply structure adapted to the Chinese GB standards, so as to contribute to measures against atmospheric pollution, which has become a serious social issue.

M&TE will assemble filters that use TFNL’s nonwoven fabrics for high-performance filters, thus accelerating the expansion of sales in the country as well as around the world by directly supplying to major home electronics and automobile manufacturers.

Global demand for air filters is expected to continue growing primarily in Asia and other emerging countries. In particular, the Korean market is an important target, given the anticipated spreading of the filter business to other parts of the world led by global players in various fields, such as automobile and home electronics, in addition to steady demand for air cleaner applications.

Toray and MCM will position M&TE as a base for global expansion of air filter business, and along with strengthening response to local customers, will implement a strategy that will leverage the superiority of both companies, while identifying new areas of applications.