SCANDINAVIAN Industrialised Building Systems (SIBS) will invest over RM200mil for a second manufacturing facility in Penang Science Park, Bukit Minyak, to boost production of its modular construction materials.
The 46,450 sq m plant, located on a 15-acre site, will be a larger facility than the first, says chief executive officer Erik Thomaeus.
“The annual production of the new plant will, over time, increase four times, making SIBS one of the largest producers of apartment modules with a yearly production of 2.5 million sq ft of residential area, ” Thomaeus adds.
SIBS produces parameterised modularisation by working with its team of engineers, experts in industrial construction and architects to enable a smarter method for property development.
“The system allows for greater flexibility in execution and significantly shortens construction time.
“The methodology brings construction inside a controlled factory setting with all its advantages to produce a much more efficient project. Our vision is to reach 90% completion of a building off-site, ” he says.This would help reduce delays in the execution of a development project as the indoor production would make it easier to implement a quality control system, enable continuous improvement of production processes and improve the work environment immensely. Additionally, construction works will not be subjected to unfavourable weather.
According to Thomaeus, the investment will gradually create 600 to 800 new jobs in Penang. This includes opportunities as suppliers, partners and contractors in the supporting network.
Thomaeus says the investment will place Penang on the map in the industrialised building system (IBS) industry.
”The IBS infrastructure will grow rapidly and attract more international IBS producers over time.
“We started planning for this expansion during the construction of the first factory, as we saw a huge demand for our products in the European market. All the current production is exported from Malaysia to Europe and we foresee that this will be the case also for the future production facility.
“But who knows, the local market is showing great interest in us and our products. Perhaps in five to 10 years, we will be doing our first project in Malaysia, ” he adds.
The IBS industry has gained popularity in many parts of the world including Malaysia.
SIBS has formed a team of Swedish and Malaysian engineers who are experts in industrial construction and industrial production to explore and tap into opportunities in the field.
”Besides industrial construction and production, the engineers are also experts in environmental technology and sustainability, logistics and transportation, and real estate development.
“Together, they have created a very intelligent product system, a unique production process set-up with our developed process equipment and houses that are intelligent, energy self-sufficient and beautiful.
“I am so proud to be a part of this development and the achievements we have reached together, ” Thomaeus says.
He notes that there is a need worldwide to develop a more intelligent and faster construction method.
”The SIBS engineers have taken on an important mission and I am impressed by the results.
“It is very rewarding to see such global cooperation taking place to develop and build a system together, a system which is considered by many to be the most advanced building system globally.
“Furthermore, I am very glad that we chose Penang again for the new investment. Penang has a long history of producing industrial automation equipment and industrial production, and has a vast availability of educated and experienced engineers within many different fields of expertise, ” he adds.
Thomaeus says the company strives to be the most effective developer, producer and owner of residential housing globally.
”SIBS is on a mission to change the industry by optimising every aspect of building design, production, construction and management whilst maintaining a focus on environmental sustainability and design flexibility.
”It is time to move beyond traditional construction towards an era of greater industrial intelligence and change how we design, engineer, deliver and manage residential buildings, ” he says.
The SIBS group has some 330 employees and operates within the entire property chain, from acquisitions and development to production, transport, construction and property management.