SHAH ALAM, Malaysia—Top Glove Corp. Bhd. has seen its booked orders for rubber gloves double in recent months, mainly due to the global outbreak of COVID-19.
At the initial stage of the outbreak, sales orders came mainly from China, Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea, the Malaysian glove maker said in its recent quarterly results.
More recently, though, the group said it had received strong sales orders from Europe, the U.S. and other countries, following the rapid spread of coronavirus to other continents.
For the three months ended Feb. 29, Top Glove reported an 8.7 percent increase in after-tax profit to about $26.7 million, with sales up 6 percent to roughly $283 million.
Going forward, the group said it expected "very solid quarters ahead," having already secured "exceptionally large sales orders" for the next few months on the back of the COVID-19 outbreak.
In addition, several other factors, including the recent plunge in oil prices, are expected to push Top Glove's results up for the second half of its fiscal year 2020, which ends Aug. 31.
Top Glove said it will continue to expand its operations in line with the growing glove demand globally, particularly in view of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.
Operating 34 factories, the group said it aims to open three new plants in 2020 with 70 production lines and an overall capacity of 8.2 billion pieces per year.
This will bring Top Glove's total output to more than 81 billion pieces a year by the end of 2020.
In 2021, the glove maker is planning to expand two of the currently under-construction plants and add two more factories, with an overall capacity to produce 9.5 billion pieces across 80 production lines.
By the end of 2021, Top Glove expects to operate a total of 39 factories with an annual output of 91.1 billion pieces.
The Malaysian group also said it is looking to increase its current capacity utilization rate of 90 percent to close to 100 percent.