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Mark Paterson Technical Absorbents Ltd

Mark Paterson
R&D Manager , Technical Absorbents Ltd

Mark Paterson, R&D manager of Technical Absorbents Ltd talks about Super Absorbent Fibres, trends in this segment, prospects and the company's perspective on this product.

Which are the core areas that you work in technical textiles? What is the growth potential?
Mark Paterson
The core product that we manufacture is Super Absorbent Fibres (SAF), which absorbs up to 200 times its own weight in pure water. This is used in a wide variety of nonwoven, needle-felt, airlaid and laminated roll-goods products. Technical Absorbents has its own nonwoven capability, and sells SAF-containing fabrics to many customers. The core markets we work in are food packaging, medical, filtration, apparel, agro-products and yarns or cables. We are targeting significant global growth in the medical and filtration market sectors, both of which are high-value market sectors and offer massive growth opportunities. We are always looking for new areas to exploit with our speciality products.
Which are your biggest markets and where does Asia feature in your growth strategy? Which are the countries looking for more technical textiles?
Mark Paterson
The biggest market for us is food packaging in Europe. However, we have a global presence across a broad spectrum of products ranging from medical wound products in North America to evaporative cooling apparel in China. Asia features very high in our growth strategy plans. Our parent company is China National Chemical Corporation, and this gives us strong leverage for expansion in the Asian market. We are actively looking to expand our presence in the cable, medical and filtration sectors in Asia.

We have active enquires for new technical textiles from across the globe. The US, Europe, India, Japan, Australia and China are particularly active.
How has your business grown in the last two years? What is your target growth for the next two years?
Mark Paterson
In the last two years, we delivered a strong annual growth, in excess of 15 per cent, and we are operating at full capacity. Going forward, we are looking for faster growth and have aggressive plans to deliver this. We are looking to increase our capacity by about 20 per cent in 2015 to further fuel growth in both SAF and roll-goods fabric materials containing SAF.
What percentage of profits do you earmark for R&D annually?
Mark Paterson
We invest a significant amount in R&D as we recognise the importance of investing in our future and delivering products that exceed customer's expectations. As a guide, we spend about 10 per cent of our profits annually on R&D to improve existing products and develop new product technologies.
View comments on this interview Published on : 22 Jul 2015
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