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Ingeo fibre producer Natureworks sets up Asia Pacific HQ
24
Jan '13
NatureWorks, the world's leading supplier of biopolymers, with Ingeo fibers and plastics made from plants, not oil, announced today that the company has located its first Asia Pacific (A/P) regional headquarters in Bangkok and has expanded its team of senior commercial, managerial and technical personnel to enhance support of Ingeo customers throughout the region and to expand business.

"In many parts of Asia, most notably China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan, as in North America and Europe, Ingeo is already helping brand owners lower the carbon footprint of their plastic and fiber products, while giving these same companies significantly improved material price stability," said Marc Verbruggen, president and CEO, NatureWorks. "The opening of our first Asian headquarters is an important move as we add support for current customers and introduce Ingeo to many more."

NEW SENIOR PERSONNEL

Rich Weber will serve as the new A/P commercial director, and Viboon Pungprasert is the new general manager of NatureWorks Asia Pacific Limited. Weber will lead existing Ingeo market development work throughout the region. He is also responsible for establishing and managing new distribution relationships in Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent. He will coordinate Ingeo sales across segments and geographies and will set up commercial operations to support regional business development opportunities.

Weber joins NatureWorks from Cargill's Strategy & Business Development Group, where he managed teams of associates to deliver business strategy and mergers and acquisitions advice to Cargill senior management. Weber is relocating from the U.S. to Bangkok. Weber replaces longtime NatureWorks staffer Dan Sawyer, who with this move is now responsible for NatureWorks recently formed "new business incubator."

"My initial focus will be to meet with present customers and to develop important new relationships throughout various channels to market, including converters, downstream manufacturers, innovative brand owners and retailers," Weber said. "I will also be involved in growing our commercial and technical team to support the expanding market interest in Asia."

Viboon Pungprasert, the new general manager of NatureWorks Asia Pacific Limited, will manage the NatureWorks A/P business from Bangkok. Pungprasert explained, "By establishing a physical footprint in Thailand, NatureWorks will be better able to support the growth of its existing customers in northern Asia and develop new business in Southeast Asia. We plan to add warehousing and logistics capabilities, which will improve our supply chain by providing safety stock and the flexibility to ship product samples. NatureWorks A/P will also add customer service and finance staff that will more effectively serve our customers and support the Asia Pacific sales team. These initial investments reinforce NatureWorks' commitment to the region and its support of accelerating Asian market growth."

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