Merck’s fu­ture in China is crys­tal clear

Shanghai Daily - - CIIE -

Merck KGaA, a Ger­man science and tech­nol­ogy com­pany, is seek­ing vi­brant growth in its per­for­mance ma­te­ri­als busi­ness in China through in­vest­ment and ties with lo­cal part­ners.

In its lat­est at­tempt to deepen its com­mit­ment to China, the world’s old­est fam­ily-owned phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal and chem­i­cal com­pany, cel­e­brat­ing its 350th an­niver­sary this year, an­nounced on Mon­day dur­ing the China In­ter­na­tional Im­port Expo that it has signed a Me­moran­dam of Un­der­stand­ing with Shen­zhen-listed Vi­sionox Tech­nol­ogy Inc to com­bine the forces of the two com­pa­nies to ac­cel­er­ate the de­vel­op­ment and ap­pli­ca­tion of or­ganic light-emit­ting diodes (OLED) in China.

“This strate­gic al­liance with Vi­sionox, a world lead­ing sup­plier of in­te­grated ad­vanced dis­play so­lu­tions, will re­in­force Merck’s po­si­tion as a trust­wor­thy part­ner and sup­port the in­no­va­tion and de­vel­op­ment of our cus­tomers,” Al­lan Ga­bor, pres­i­dent of Merck China and man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Per­for­mance Ma­te­ri­als China, told the sign­ing cer­e­mony.

“It demon­strates our as­pi­ra­tion to be em­bed­ded into the lo­cal in­no­va­tion ecosys­tem, en­hance con­struc­tive strate­gic part­ner­ships and ac­cel­er­ate our lo­cal­iza­tion, in or­der to sus­tain­ably im­pact ev­ery­day life in China, to­day and for gen­er­a­tions to come.”

Merck of­fers a com­plete port­fo­lio of pre­mium livilux ma­te­ri­als for OLED dis­plays and light­ing de­vices which in­clude ma­te­ri­als for vapour pro­cesses on glass or flex­i­ble sub­strates, as well as OLED inks for print­ing.

With one of the largest R&D teams in the in­dus­try, the com­pany holds more than a thou­sand global patents and works closely with mar­ket lead­ers to de­velop de­signs with im­proved ef­fi­ciency and life­times for fu­ture OLED ap­pli­ca­tions.

Merck is one of the 2,800 ex­hibitors at the world’s first im­port-themed na­tion­al­level expo.

It has set up a booth of over 300 square me­ters at the Shang­hai Na­tional Ex­hi­bi­tion and Con­ven­tion Cen­ter to show­case a wide spec­trum of in­no­va­tive prod­ucts and tech­nolo­gies from its three pil­lar busi­nesses, namely Health Care, Life Science and Per­for­mance Ma­te­ri­als, as well as to host in­no­va­tion work­shops.

First par­tic­i­pat­ing in the Chi­nese mar­ket in the 1980s, Merck’s per­for­mance ma­te­ri­als busi­ness, en­com­pass­ing three key units of Dis­play So­lu­tions, Sur­face So­lu­tions and Semi­con­duc­tor So­lu­tions, has been grow­ing rapidly over the past three decades.

The com­pany has in­tro­duced into China many of its cut­ting-edge tech­nolo­gies, such as Dis­play So­lu­tions in liq­uid crys­tal and OLED as well as in­no­va­tive ma­te­ri­als for semi­con­duc­tor in­dus­try, to name a few.

Along with Merck’s ac­cel­er­ated in­vest­ment in China in re­cent years, con­tin­u­ous in­vest­ment has been placed in the Per­for­mance Ma­te­ri­als seg­ment which is al­ways a key driver of the com­pany’s growth in the coun­try.

Over the past five years, an ac­cu­mu­lated 44 mil­lion eu­ros (US$49.9 mil­lion) has been in­vested into the Per­for­mance Ma­te­ri­als Hub in Shang­hai.

In 2013, Merck Liq­uid Crys­tal Cen­ter China, which in­te­grates liq­uid crys­tal mix­ture pro­duc­tion, in­te­grated sup­ply chain, ap­pli­ca­tion de­vel­op­ment, sales and mar­ket­ing, was opened in the city. In 2016, the com­pany’s Liq­uid Crys­tal Ap­pli­ca­tion Lab was up­graded and ex­panded to the Dis­play Ma­te­ri­als R&D Cen­ter China.

One year later, Merck re­lo­cated the Tech­nol­ogy Ap­pli­ca­tion Net­work China for Sur­face So­lu­tions to a new site within the hub with ex­panded ca­pa­bil­i­ties. In June of this year, a brand-new OLED Tech­nol­ogy Cen­ter China was in­au­gu­rated, of­fer­ing a range of state-of-the-art equip­ment and clean room fa­cil­i­ties to en­able OLED de­vice fabri­ca­tion and char­ac­ter­i­za­tion.

“With these in­vest­ments, Merck has be­come the most lo­cal­ized player in China with a full value chain sup­port to pro­vide a wide range of ser­vices from liq­uid crys­tal man­u­fac­tur­ing, sup­ply chain, qual­ity, re­search and de­vel­op­ment, sales to tech­ni­cal ser­vices and af­ter-mar­ket sup­port,” said Ga­bor.

“They have en­abled us to of­fer a quicker re­sponse, faster de­liv­ery and closer con­tact with lo­cal cus­tomers.”

Cus­tomer-cen­tric­ity is a key strat­egy for Merck to col­lab­o­rate with its part­ners in China where over­all com­pe­ti­tion in the Per­for­mance Ma­te­ri­als seg­ment has in­ten­si­fied as more do­mes­tic play­ers gain global com­pe­tence while in­ter­na­tional coun­ter­parts are de­vel­op­ing in the lo­cal mar­ket.

Apart from mak­ing in­vest­ment in the sec­tor, which has al­lowed Merck to be aligned with the lat­est in­no­va­tion needs of lo­cal cus­tomers and help them progress in their own fields, Merck also places a keen fo­cus on max­i­miz­ing the ben­e­fits for its cus­tomers.

Take liq­uid crys­tal for ex­am­ple. Be­sides de­vel­op­ing and in­tro­duc­ing the lat­est liq­uid crys­tal ma­te­ri­als, Merck also of­fers so­lu­tions to op­ti­mize the ef­f­ciency and ef­fec­tive­ness of cus­tomers’ pro­duc­tion lines in or­der to help them save cost.

The com­pany pro­vides a unique liq­uid crys­tal pack­ing can­is­ter to cus­tomers.

On one hand, the can­is­ter can pro­vide large vol­ume of liq­uid crys­tals to pro­duc­tion lines to re­duce the shut­down and turn­around time and on the other hand, the pre­mium qual­ity of its liq­uid crys­tal can guar­an­tee the re­li­a­bil­ity of such a big vol­ume, which is sev­eral dozens of times more than tra­di­tional glass bot­tles.

The stain­less steel can­is­ter can also be re­cy­cled and reused for fur­ther pack­ag­ing, which there­fore pro­vides cus­tomers with en­vi­ron­men­tally-friendly pack­ag­ing so­lu­tions.

With dis­play so­lu­tions be­ing one of its big­gest ar­eas of ex­per­tise, Merck holds a unique per­spec­tive that OLED and liq­uid crys­tal dis­play, or LCD, will co-ex­ist in a fore­see­able decade with the for­mer fo­cus­ing more on medium and small-sized screens and the lat­ter more ad­van­ta­geous in larger screens.

The com­pany, for in­stance, launched this year three new liq­uid crys­tal sin­gle ma­te­ri­als, which can pro­vide bet­ter per­for­mance in a bet­ter bal­ance of high trans­mis­sion rates, wide color range and re­li­a­bil­ity to meet the most com­plex re­quire­ments in trans­mis­sion, con­trast and re­li­a­bil­ity.

Look­ing for­ward, Merck’s per­for­mance ma­te­ri­als seg­ment will con­tinue to bank its suc­cess on lo­cal­iza­tion, tal­ent and part­ner­ship.

“We will con­tinue to strengthen our foot­print, es­pe­cially in the elec­tron­ics mar­ket and ac­cel­er­ate our growth in the coun­try by fo­cus­ing on ap­pli­ca­tion­driven and cus­tom­ized so­lu­tions and en­abling our cus­tomers to lever­age mar­ket trends with our so­lu­tions,” Ga­bor said.

“Par­tic­u­larly, we’ve per­ceived great po­ten­tial in the Yangtze River Delta where most of our fa­cil­i­ties and many of our cus­tomers are lo­cated as the re­gion boasts out­stand­ing in­fra­struc­ture, friendly in­vest­ment en­vi­ron­ment as well as a high qual­ity tal­ent pool.”

Al­lan Ga­bor, pres­i­dent of Merck China and man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Per­for­mance Ma­te­ri­als China.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.