By: Frank Esposito
February 6, 2013
CLEVELAND -- Strong sales growth in plastic additives will lead Flow Polymers LLC to install a new production line by the end of the year.
Sales of SureFlo-brand additives made by Cleveland-based Flow grew 40 percent during 2012, President and CEO Mike Ivany said in a Feb. 5 phone interview. The firm had planned to add the new line during 2012, but Ivany said Flow personnel were able to get more production out of the existing line, which started up in 2009.
SureFlo growth has come from several areas, but Ivany said that recently the material has provided "the biggest benefit" in blow molded parts used in landscaping and trash removal. SureFlo is a proprietary mix of hydrocarbon resins that can increase flow and line speed, and allow different resins to be reprocessed together.
During 2012, Flow also moved part of its rubber-based business to an 83,000-square-foot plant about four miles away from its existing plant in an industrial area of Cleveland's east side. The additional space was needed after Flow closed a smaller plant in Connecticut in late 2011 because of environmental issues from a previous business at that site.
Adding the second site and overall sales growth allowed Flow to add 25 jobs during 2012, Ivany said. More jobs might need to be added in 2014 after the second SureFlo production line comes on later this year.
Flow's main business has been rubber additives and dispersions since it was founded in 1984 by Cleveland entrepreneur Dan Moore. In late 2010, Moore's Dan T. Moore Co. sold a stake of about 75 percent in Flow to Chicago private equity firm Geneva Glen Capital LLC.
The existing SureFlo production line is in a 100,000 square-foot building that was used to manufacture torpedoes during World War II.