Kimberly-Clark Corp. announced on Sept. 12 plans to construct its first manufacturing facility in Russia to support its growing consumer business there and in Eastern Europe. The multi-million dollar facility will be built in phases and will produce personal care and tissue products under the Huggies and Kleenex brands. The facility will be located in Stupino, approximately 60 miles southeast from Moscow, and will occupy an area of about 100 acres.
"Russia is a strategically important market for Kimberly-Clark due to its rapid economic growth and the long-term potential of its health and hygiene categories," said Tom Davis, President of Kimberly-Clark's Middle East, Eastern Europe and Africa group. "Local manufacturing is a key element of our strategy." The company has placed particular emphasis on Russia and five other key countries that it refers to as BRICIT -- Brazil, Russia, Indonesia, China, India and Turkey.
Consumer spending and retail sales in both Russia and Eastern Europe have been growing at double-digit rates for the past several years and are projected to grow at high single-digit rates for the next decade. The region has a burgeoning middle class that shows strong appreciation for high-quality branded products, according to a company statement.