Humax sees Belfast as base for growth


The Korean company Humax Electronics, which last week announced it is investing £3 million sterling in a factory in Newtownards to manufacture digital satellite television receivers, is to use the brand name of Conin.

This is an innovative technology company which was set up in 1989 by a group of electronics post-graduates from the Engineering College of Seoul National University. The company has developed a number of successful products including computer hardware and a home video karaoke machine for customers in Korea and China.

Its turnover has doubled each year for the past three years, and its flotation in April on KOSDAQ, Korea's technology stock market, was over-subscribed by a multiple of 500 to one.

Humax is one of the first companies in the world to develop, manufacture, and market a set top box (STB) for digital television broadcasts.

Humax managing director, Mr Jang Yong Kim, said the company was setting up in Northern Ireland in order to maximise the potential in Europe of its expertise in digital television technology.

"Our STBs have sold well in Europe under the Samsung name since September last year," he said, "and this has encouraged us to set up a European base to capitalise on the extensive business opportunities which our research into the digital multi-media market has demonstrated."

Northern Ireland Economy Minister Mr Adam Ingram said that the investment by Humax was a significant boost for the electronics sector.

"It will provide opportunities for local component suppliers, as well as offering extensive opportunities to software and electronics engineers," he said.