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Toray Industries Inc., Teijin Ltd. and NEC Corp. will set up a joint venture in January to develop online systems to trade products such as fiber, fiber materials, textiles and resins, the firms said on Tuesday. The venture will offer a separate online system to trade each of the products, and ask other fiber producers to join their e-commerce efforts. Toray and Teijin are arch-rivals in the domestic synthetic fiber business, but with profitability falling due to competition from Chinese and other manufacturers, they hope joint trading will help them improve operational and cost efficiency. The joint venture will be capitalized at 480 million yen (US$4.3 million), with Toray and Teijin each putting up 200 million yen and NEC 80 million yen. “As soon as Teijin President Shosaku Yasui sounded me out about joint operation several months ago, I decided to accept the offer because an online system run only by us could not become the industry standard,” said Toray President Katsuhiko Hirai. The three partners target 30 billion yen worth of annual online transactions in the first year, with the participation of 60 domestic companies. They hope to raise that figure to 100 billion yen and sign up 170 members in three years, they said.
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