KUCHING: Stihl Holdings (Stihl) has attributed its outstanding brand reputation in East Malaysia and Brunei to the hard work and commitment of KTS Group of Companies (KTS).
Its Advisory Board chairman Dr Nikolas Stihl said the business of KTS-Stihl in the region had grown steadily over the last five decades.
“Today, KTS has a strong sales organisation which distributes through its own branches and authorised Stihl dealers. Apart from chainsaws, KTS started with other hand-held outdoor power tools such as brush cutters, sprayers and palm cutters.
“Today, the Stihl brand enjoys an outstanding reputation and leading position in Sarawak, Sabah and Brunei. This is, to a large extent, the result of KTS’ successful work and great commitment.
“What started with an order of 200 chainsaws has grown to a business with more than 30,000 power tools sold last year,” he said at the KTS-Stihl 50th anniversary gala dinner at the KTS Garden last Saturday.
Nikolas reiterated that “KTS is outstanding” compared to other Stihl distributors.
“No other distributor in Asia generates higher revenues per capita. This being so, I would like to express our sincere thanks for the 50 years of cooperation.”
He extended his appreciation to KTS managing director Dato Henry Lau and deputy managing director Temenggong Datuk Vincent Lau as well as their capable team and qualified dealers for expanding the business steadily.
According to Nikolas, KTS is much more than just a distributor of Stihl products.
He said Henry had pursued his father’s (KTS founding managing director the late Dato Sri Lau Hui Kang) path in a very successful manner.
“Still family-owned, KTS has grown to be a group of companies with timber business, agriculture, oil palm plantations and general trading as well as land development, to name only the mainstays,” noted Nikolas.
He said Stihl is pleased that KTS has been a very loyal partner over the last 50 years.
“We greatly appreciate the close collaboration and returned that loyalty as a matter of course even in difficult times. For example, we jointly overcame the deep recession caused by the Asian financial crisis at the end of the 1990s.
“During that period, KTS succeeded in retaining qualified staff, which proved to be the basis for growth after the crisis. Having lasting success since 1962, you always carried entrepreneurial responsibility, proving your social accountability at the same time. This makes Dato Henry Lau and Datuk Vincent Lau special and good corporate citizens,” he pointed out.
Nikolas, who with his cousin Selena Stihl represent the Stihl family, said he was also delighted to see the next generation of Lau family in the company.
“Tight family ties provide the solid base for sustainable success.”
While lauding KTS for its farsightedness, he pledged that Stihl would remain at the leading edge of technological progress for further success.
“Stihl will adhere to its long-term strategy and sustainability based on innovation, premium quality and extensive customer orientation as well as permanent investments in modern production facilities and high commitment to environmental protection.
“Stihl is a strong and independent company on a very sound financial footing – 100 per cent family-owned and thus long-term oriented.
“What started with a distributor-agreement in 1968 has grown into a solid partnership of two successful family-owned companies on the back of mutual understanding, trust and loyalty. You (Henry), your father and your brother have accomplished an amazing feat,” added Nikolas.
Among those present were KTS deputy managing director Stephen Lau and KTS light machinery department general manager Augustine Ling.