Orion Corp., South Korea's second-largest confectionery company, expects that its overseas sales will grow next year, largely driven by robust sales in China, company officials said Monday.
The company, best-known for its hallmark "Choco Pie," projected that its overseas sales will grow 28.4 percent to 1.31 trillion won (US$1.17 billion), likely to surpass its domestic sales for the first time.
Orion officials said China accounts for more than 80 percent of its overseas sales.
Pan Orion Corp., the Chinese subsidiary of Orion, forecast that its sales will reach 643 billion won this year, up 22.5 percent from 524.7 billion won in 2010.
The company's strong performance in China stems partly from the robust growth of China's confectionery market, which is estimated to have reached $6.53 billion last year.
Orion will continue to expand its presence in the northeastern and western regions of China, with strong sales of Choco Pie, or 'Haoliyou' in Chinese, the company officials said.
The South Korean firm plans to expand its production facilities in China in a bid to achieve sales of more than 1.35 trillion won there by 2015, averaging an annual 20.5 percent growth.
Market watchers expect total confectionery sales in the world's No. 2 economy will grow 9.4 percent annually to reach $11.2 billion in 2015.