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:: Larox Established a Subsidiary in China: Local Service for the Growing Filtration Market

Larox reinforced its presence in the growing Chinese market by establishing a subsidiary near Shanghai in the beginning of 2009. The subsidiary manufactures and sells Larox filters and filtration solutions, and offers comprehensive aftermarket services to Chinese customers.

“Larox's strategy is to grow, and to offer local service worldwide. China is a very important market for us, and we want to service our Chinese customers in the best possible way. Being present in China will help Larox better respond to customers' needs and better monitor market developments and emerging new applications," explains Mr. Topi Karppanen, President and CEO of Larox Corporation.

China has seen a rapid development of its economy, which has led to expansions both in the Mining and Metallurgy and Chemical Process Industries. With the growth of these industry sectors, the demand for high quality filtration solutions has been increasing steadily. “China is facing increasing pressure to improve its industry's energy efficiency. There are ambitious targets and programs aiming to reduce energy consumption and emissions. This drives demand for efficient filtration technology. Larox is very well positioned to offer competitive solutions to help our customers reduce costs, consume less energy and improve process performance in many ways," says Mr. Karppanen.

China has also suffered from the global financial crisis and as a result growth estimations have been lowered. The China market however is still growing, and according to World Bank estimation published in March 2009, China's economic growth this year will amount to 6.5 percent.

Larox has been represented for many years in China by its local agent Filterox, but opening a subsidiary demonstrates that Larox really has a long-term commitment in China. “The majority of the subsidiary's employees were already working for Filterox," says Mr. Karppanen, “Filterox has done excellent work, and thanks to them Larox has been able to build fruitful cooperation with the Chinese customers. It was a natural step for us to offer job opportunities to the whole Filterox team at Larox. This is also good news for our customers as they will continue to have the same, familiar contact persons for Larox products and services."

“We have brand new production and office premises in the Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP) near Shanghai, in addition to an office in the city of Shanghai," reports Mr. Markku Hakala, Deputy General Manager for Larox in China, “Local assembly of filters will start in the coming weeks for deliveries scheduled in early autumn this year. At the moment, we are recruiting to be fully operational with approximately 40 people in total by the end of this year."

“There is an important growth potential in the Chinese filtration market," says Mr. Su Xugui, Managing Director of Larox China, “China is the world's biggest producer of copper, coal and aluminium, and one of the biggest when it comes to gold. China is a big country with rapid economic growth which ensures that the Mining and Metallurgy industries will continue to grow also in the future."

Many Chinese Mining and Metallurgy companies are already operating with Larox filters. “One of our strengths is the broad product portfolio: we can offer the right filtration solution for many different needs in the smelters and refineries. Larox Pressure Filters, for example, have gained a solid reputation among Mining and Metallurgy customers. This fully automated technology offers excellent process performance, reliability and lower operating costs in many applications from the dewatering of mineral concentrates to tailings," says Mr. Xugui.

“By using Larox's pressure or ceramic filtration technologies, our customers can achieve major savings in energy consumption as they can eliminate the pre-dryer stage in most of the dewatering applications in the smelter as a result of drier concentrate," Mr. Xugui explains, “In hydrometallurgy applications, our customers get higher production recovery rate because of better washing results and drier cake. And at the same time, Larox's technology reduces the environmental impact of the process."




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