Plastic compounders should be ready for a new and changing ways of doing business, and be prepared for customer demands to be different in the developed markets than in emerging markets in the next 10 years, according to Bernard Rzepka, general manager and COO, Europe, Middle East, Africa for A. Schulman, Inc.
Rzepka spoke Nov. 15, 2011, at the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) EUROTEC 2011 conference in Barcelona. His presentation, "Compounding 2021 — How to Grow in a Decade of Uncertainty," examined challenges and opportunities compounders can expect in the global markets through 2021.
"We are seeing a number of long-term trends indicating that the developed and developing regions of the world will continue to change quite differently from each other," Rzepka said. "For example, there will be a greater proportion of younger people in developing countries while the populations of developed countries are becoming older and wealthier. Compounders must understand these differences and use that knowledge to adapt constantly. They need to be flexible enough to ensure their products and services provide added value for customers in the context of their particular markets and regions. Sales, marketing, R&D and operations should act locally and regionally, but all key activities should be coordinated globally."
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