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Tue 28 Oct 2008 06:26 AM

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UK bathroom giant targets Gulf region

Europe's biggest maker of prefab bathrooms eyes region for growth amid UK construction slowdown.

Europe’s biggest manufacturer of prefabricated bathrooms expects to generate up to 50 percent of its business from the Gulf region in the next five years amid the slowing UK construction industry.

Scottish-based RB Farquhar, the bathroom manufacturer for all prefabricated bathrooms (pods) for the budget hotel chain Travelodge, is opening its second manufacturing plant in the emirate of Al Ain next year, the managing director Michael Shand, said in an interview in Dubai on Monday.

“This region represents a lot of opportunity for our company [and] potentially in five years time at least 50 percent of our business could be from the GCC region,” he said.

The Al Ain plant will be the family owned company’s second self financed plant and will have the capacity to manufacture 10,000 pods annually said Shand. The firm also has capacity to expand in the future he said.

“We have enough land secured to build another two factories of a similar size if we need to.”  

In 2007 the firm reported revenues of $37 million and profits of $2.5 million.

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