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From Value One, Spring 2016 No. 52
MM Steel Service Center Corporation
Steel Service Center with the Top Share in the Philippines
Our Growth Path

MM Steel Service Center Corporation (MMSS) is a well-established steel service center in the Philippines, possessing a quarter-century of history that began with the founding of its predecessor, Hi-Precision Steel Center, Inc. The MMSS plant is situated about thirty-five kilometers south of Manila in an industrial park about half an hour away from the capital city by car.
MMSS is now the top steel service center in the Philippines, but the path to that achievement was full of hardships. At the time the company was formed in 1990, riding the strong wave of economic growth in the country, the manufacturing industry was expected to grow significantly. That was particularly true of the automotive and household appliance industries, and Japanese trading companies all established steel service centers in the country. In the early 2000s, however, political unrest in the Philippines and the aggressive policies of ASEAN countries to attract manufacturing persuaded Japanese manufacturers to relocate production to countries such as Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia. The Philippines got left behind, and the country’s economy stagnated. Our company was also affected. We merged with Marubeni-Itochu Steel Inc.’s steel service center in 2009, giving rise to the current organization.


The plant’s exterior

High-Mix Low-Volume Products

The market for our main products—high-grade sheets for automobiles and household appliances—is not large at about 150,000 tonnes a year, so most of our projects are the “high-mix low-volume” type. We therefore handle a wide variety of products, from hot- and cold-rolled steel sheets to galvanized steel sheet, electrical steel sheets, stainless steel sheet, coated steel sheet, steel pipe and aluminum plate.
The above-mentioned merger gave our company the top share, exceeding 30 percent. We are all working together to pursue further growth along with the expanding economy of the Philippines.

 

Inside the plant
The Economic Growth We’re Seeing Firsthand

Since President Aquino took office in 2010, the economy of the Philippines has been growing steadily at an average annual rate of over 6 percent. Japanese manufacturers have renewed interest in the Philippines as they seek to avoid the China risk and secure a competitive labor force, so the steel market here is gradually expanding. As the country’s population increases—topping 100 million people in July 2014—the Philippine government is aiming for domestic job creation and focusing on attracting manufacturers. Last year, for example, the government announced measures to promote the automotive industry. Japanese car manufacturers such as Toyota and Mitsubishi Motors are expected to expand production in the Philippines, presenting a massive business opportunity.

 

The cityscape of Manila, a rapidly growing city

 

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