Owens Corning invests in Mexico

By Stephen Downer
Correspondent

Published: November 21, 2012 6:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Materials, Suppliers

MEXICO CITY (Nov. 21, 2 p.m. ET) — Glass-fiber giant Owens Corning Corp. has put a new furnace on-stream at its glass-reinforcement facility in Tlaxcala, Mexico, an investment the Mexican government said is worth $80 million.

Owens Corning described the investment in a news release as “the latest step” in its global capacity to produce composite material. This fall’s announcement coincides with that of a similar investment at the company’s plant in Gus-Khroustalny, Russia, 120 miles east of Moscow.

“The Tlaxcala plant expansion will support increased manufacturing of Owens Corning’s corrosion-resistant Advantex glass and will initially produce assembled roving and dry-use chopped strands,” Owens Corning said.

The furnace more than doubles production capacity at the facility, 100 miles east of Mexico City, it added.

According to Mexico’s Economy Ministry, the investment is worth $80 million and will enable Owens Corning, headquartered in Toledo, Ohio, to produce 220.5 million pounds of composites a year at the plant, making it one of the largest of its kind anywhere.

In a separate development, Steve Zirkel, general manager of Owens Corning’s global thermoplastics business, said a growing trend in glass-reinforced thermoplastics is being driven partly by the shale gas boom in the United States.

“We are continuing to see trends in the market for greater usage of thermoplastics in light vehicles, appliances, building and construction,” he said in a telephone interview. “Part of this is being driven by shale gas and continuing strength in the building sector.”

“Roughly a third of the glass-reinforced market is thermoplastics” he said, adding that, “of that third, a majority goes into automotive applications.”

Mexico boasts a mushrooming light-vehicle assembly sector, which is on course to produce 3.7 million units this year and 4 million in 2013. “We’re seeing movement in Tier 1 and Tier 2 [suppliers] in northern Mexico,” Zirkel said, explaining that Owens Corning’s “primary [supply] source” of glass-reinforced thermoplastics is one of its facilities in South Carolina.

But he added that Tlaxcala and other plants give the company “a lot of options” in terms of potential production growth.

Economy Minister Bruno Ferrari said the U.S. company also has signed agreements with Mexico’s National Council of Science and Technology (Conacyt) to conduct nanotechnology research in Mexico.

Owens Corning was founded in 1938, employs 15,000 in 28 countries and reported sales of $5.3 billion in 2011. Its composites business posted sales of $1.43 billion through the third quarter, compared to $1.52 billion in the same period in 2011.


Comments

Owens Corning invests in Mexico

By Stephen Downer
Correspondent

Published: November 21, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

PolyOne says new Shanghai center will ease collaboration across segments

April 24, 2014 2:34 pm ET

PolyOne Specialty Engineered Materials is opening an innovation Center in Shanghai's Jinqiao development zone that will serve as its new Asia Pacific ...    More

Biopolymer firms report success with PHA pilot production

April 24, 2014 1:30 pm ET

Biopolymer developer Meridian Inc. and Tate & Lyle plc have reported successful pilot production of Meridian's process to make polyhydroxyalkanoate,...    More

Songwon acquires division of India's SeQuent

April 24, 2014 12:22 pm ET

Songwon Industrial Group of South Korea has signed a deal with SeQuent Scientific Limited, India to acquire SeQuent's specialty chemicals business.    More

Image

Performance Plastics unit helps lead to increase in sales for Dow Chemical

April 24, 2014 9:57 am ET

Dow reported turnover of $14.5 billion April 23, including an adjusted 6 percent increase in sales at its performance plastics operation, which it...    More

Image

Milliken expanding SC plant for additional PP clarifying agent capacity

April 23, 2014 3:42 pm ET

American chemical company Milliken & Co. has announced plans for a major expansion in capacity for its Millad NX8000 clarifying agent for polypropylen...    More

Market Reports

Market Data Book - Rankings & Lists

A one-stop download of Plastic News' exclusive annual lists and processor rankings containing essential data including sales, employees, end markets, materials and more.
EXCLUSIVE EXCEL FEATURE: full mailing address details for available plant locations.

Learn more

Thermoformed Packaging 2014 Market Review & Outlook North America

This in-depth report provides analysis and discussions of economic and political conditions, market trends, legislative/regulatory activity impacting supply and demand, business opportunities and threats, materials pricing, manufacturing technology, as well as strategies being implemented by thermoformed packaging companies. In addition, there are reviews of 25 leading thermoformers in the packaging segment, assessing their growth initiatives and performance metrics over 10 years.

Learn more

Mold Making and Tooling Review and Outlook 2014 North America

This report provides in-depth analysis of the mold and toolmaking market for North America, including discussions of trends, opportunities, threats, the latest developments in production and labor and equipment trends impacting moldmakers.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

May 6, 2014 - May 8, 2014Plastics in Medical Devices 2014

May 12, 2014 - May 12, 2014Plastics News Brazil Pharma Summit

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

February 3, 2015 - February 7, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events