Stahl Asia have recently celebrated their Silver Jubilee. The company was founded on November 12, 1980 and to celebrate the 25th anniversary, a video clip and poster were made and were launched at the company’s Annual Dinner and Dance at the Swissotel The Stamford.

Prior to this time, Stahl products were supplied to South East Asia by Stahl Australia, a company which had grown out of a business founded by Robert Armstrong and his father to produce leather finishing products for the Australian leather industry. As the industry in South East Asia began to grow, Stahl realised not only the potential growth factor but also the importance of Singapore as a centre of trade for the area. The huge distances from Sydney into South East Asian countries convinced he management of the company that, rather than ship products in through Australia or direct from other Stahl companies, they should support the idea of setting up a company in Singapore and using it as a focus for Stahl potential business in the area. The success of Stahl Asia has proved how right this was.

The first factory was built on the current site in Tanjong Penjuru Crescent on reclaimed land between the city and the harbour designated for industrial use. The location provided easy access to one of the largest cargo shipping ports and also to Singapore’s Changi Airport, then in its early days but destined to become one of the world’s great airports. It was an ideal choice.

Later in 1989 a new office and laboratory building was commissioned, its modern design reflecting Stahl’s forward looking approach. Later in 1999, this was expanded to provide greater space for laboratory facilities including new coating machinery, and other customer facilities together with improved staff facilities.

Over the years, the business has grown steadily and Stahl Asia set up local application laboratories in Thailand, Korea, Japan and Taiwan to support growing businesses in these areas and to reinforce its belief ‘with a little help from your local friend’. The agents and distributors of the various territories are instrumental to the company’s 25 years of success and Stahl Asia thank them for being a ‘local friend’.

More recently, Stahl Asia has supported and played an important role in setting up Stahl Coatings and Fine Chemicals (Suzhou) Co Ltd and in supervising the construction of the new factory at Suzhou which will shortly commence production.

Since 2005, Stahl Asia Pacific has been managed by Rodney Hammond. As Stahl Asia looks forward to the next 25 years, Rodney says: ‘The first 25 years have been exciting and successful ones for Stahl Asia as the company used Singapore as an excellent focus for growing its business throughout South East Asia. The next 25 look just as exciting as our plans take shape. Stahl Asia is well placed both geographically and as a well-known supplier of products to the leather industry to take advantage of the potential for growth in the area.’