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Business deals

With Southeast Asians shopping at home, Siam Cement buys box maker

Thai conglomerate to acquire Vietnam's Bien Hoa Packaging

Delivering the goods outside Hanoi: Demand for cardboard boxes is growing in Southeast Asia.   © Reuters

BANGKOK -- Siam Cement will buy a Vietnamese packaging materials maker, the Thai industrial group said Friday, drawn by the growth of online shopping as Southeast Asia hunkers down to avoid the coronavirus.

The group will purchase Bien Hoa Packaging through a joint venture with top Japanese cardboard maker Rengo.

Siam Cement said the size of the deal has yet to be determined, but estimated it would be less than 15% of the Thai group's total assets as of the end of December, which came to 634.7 billion baht ($19.2 million).

Bien Hoa produces 90,000 tons of cardboard boxes and 10,000 tons of food packaging materials a year.

The company, listed on the Ho Chi Minh City Stock Exchange, earned a $6 million net profit for 2019 on about $73 million in revenue.

Siam Cement's head office in Bangkok: The group is pursuing more acquisitions in Southeast Asia.   © Reuters

Recent stock sell-offs have pushed Bien Hoa's share price down 9% from the start of the year.

Siam Cement "has been closely monitoring the situation and thoroughly considered this strategic opportunity," the Thai company said in a statement.

Siam Cement has been active in acquisitions, largely in Southeast Asia. It operates production sites in Vietnam, Indonesia, the Philippines and Malaysia, in addition to Thailand. 

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