In the third instalment of the business plan series, gasworld Business Intelligence explores TNSC’s Ortus strategy.
In 2015, Taiyo Nippon Sanso Corporation (TNSC) announced Ortus Stage 1, its medium-term management plan set out to ensure future company growth. This included structural reforms that aimed to strengthen its earnings base in Japan and raise company efficiency.
Ortus Stage 1 initially set out to accomplish sales of ¥600bn ($4.8bn), an operating profit of ¥45bn ($365m), 8% or higher ROCE and a 40% or higher ratio of overseas sales to total sales in the fiscal year ending March 2017.
The Stage 1 section of the Ortus plan outlined the need for the company to innovate to maintain its forecasted growth trajectory. The company also stated that Ortus Stage 1 focused on the development of new materials and product lines that could potentially grow into mainstay products across new businesses.
In 2014, to promote a more global business, the company secured a contract with Sasol Chemical (USA) LLC to build an ASU and supply piped oxygen and nitrogen to Sasol’s large-scale ethane cracker project in Louisiana, US.
Furthermore, as part of the Ortus Stage 1 strategy, TNSC expanded its operations in South East Asia, gaining new production contracts in countries such as the Philippines and Indonesia.
One key region in which there has been a noticeable increase in M&A activity is one of TNSC’s largest overseas markets, the US.
There was a significant acquisition push in the US from the company in 2014/15, with notable business purchases in California and Hawaii. TNSC also conducted a high-profile acquisition of Continental Carbonic in the US, through subsidiary company MATHESON Tri-Gas.
This expansion in the US has also continued into more recent years, with MATHESON acquiring a number of Air Liquide and Airgas assets divested as part of Air Liquide’s acquisition of Airgas in 2016.
Early this year, TNSC revealed Stage 2 of its Ortus strategy, which is due to commence in fiscal year 2018. This plan will build upon Stage 1 and focus largely on profitable growth.
Under the revised policy, TNSC aims to generate revenues of approximately ¥800bn ($7bn), compared to sales of ¥580bn ($5bn) in 2015.
The basic policies under Stage 2 of the business plan include the expansion of the company’s domestic gas business, an acceleration of its R&D strategy, a continuation of its globalisation policy and a structural reform.
Stage 2 of the Ortus strategy will target expansion in three key geographical areas. This includes strengthening the company’s market leadership position in Japan, by expanding all gas and gas-related business through the maximisation of group synergy.
In the US, the company plans to expand its presence in new business areas by increasing its product groups through active capital investment and M&A activity. In Asia and Oceania, TNSC aims to improve its market share in a variety of new regions, including new business ventures in unoccupied regions via the reinforcement of governance through regional holding companies.
Under Ortus Stage 2, TNSC also revealed plans to invest ¥340bn ($3bn) over a four-year period, of which 70% will be allocated to strategic investments. These investments will centre on M&A and large-scale capital expenditures both nationally and internationally.
Additionally, TNSC has announced it will expand its business territory and reinforce operational density, acquire new products, technologies and supply chains, and expand its medical business.
This is the fourth in a series of articles that gets behind some of the business plans and accounting measures of the major industrial gas companies, and the industry itself.