Plantheon Opens Bt400m Chemical Fertiliser Plant

29 May 2009 • by Natalie Aster

Plantheon, the agribusiness arm of the Sirivadhanabhakdi family, yesterday opened a Bt400-million chemical-fertiliser plant in Ayutthaya to satisfy its own needs as well as market demand.

"We expect to enter the fertiliser market, as there is less competition in the domestic market and there are limited manufacturers of fertiliser for energy plants in the global market," president Prasert Maekwatana said yesterday.

Plantheon's wholly owned subsidiary Terragro built the facility on 150 rai of land. Production capacity is 1 million tonnes per year.

About 80 per cent of its output will be marketed under the Crown brand and the rest is for the company's use.

In four years, the fertiliser market has expanded from Bt4 billion to Bt6 billion, or 4 million tonnes per year.

The company produced 250,000 tonnes of fertiliser last year and has more than 200 distributors around the country.

It plans to launch a marketing strategy emphasising brand recognition through demonstrations for consumers and distribution channels through price promotions, such as wholesale discounts.

"Despite the economic downturn and petroleum price instability, we still believe that the domestic fertiliser market will recover soon because next quarter is the season when farmers increase their production.

"The government also places great importance on food products. Farmers need to raise more to answer the demand from the market," Prasert said.

Plantheon has prepared seven types of chemical fertilisers to satisfy all consumer categories. Their chemical formulas depend on the kind of plant.

The company plans to increase the plant's capacity next year in expectation of 15-per-cent growth in sales.

Within three years, the company will reach the break-even point, Prasert added.