Sri Lanka's Rocell Bathware, a unit of tile maker Royal Ceramics Lanka, said it has started sales of sanitaryware products from its new plant this month.

The company, the island's only sanitaryware manufacturer, said in a statement its products would be sold through Royal Ceramics network of 'Rocell' showrooms.

The Rocell Bathware plant was built with an investment of over 1.8 billion rupees with technical know-how and machinery from Sacmi of Italy. It has also hired Italian designers to design its bathware products.

The statement said Rocell Bathware products got a good response when exhibited for the first time at the recently held ?Architect 2009?, an annual trade exhibition organized by the Sri Lanka Institute of Architects.

Tharana Thoradeniya, chief executive of Rocell Bathware, said their products are made to meet European standards and would cater to both the domestic and overseas markets.

The Rocell Bathware manufacturing facility is equipped with a ninety cubic meter kiln, semi-pressure casting machines, automated driers and robotic glazing lines.

The company has a ceramic laboratory with the resources to conduct in-house research and development and product quality assurance procedures, the statement said.

The facility houses a second product-testing laboratory to carry out functional tests on finished products, such as testing dimensional stability, weight bearing capabilities, flush and disposal efficiency and leakage testing.

Rocell Bathware has also tied up with European raw material suppliers, including Sibelco of the United Kingdom, a top quality clay supplier, to source good quality raw materials for its manufacturing process, it said.

Thoradeniya said that the company would use one of the latest innovations in the ceramics industry by producing Fine Fireclay products in addition to vitreous china (porcelain) products, as fine fireclay allows the manufacturer to produce large format products in ceramic.

He added that this was the latest design trend in the European and North American markets.