logo

Blow molder Alpla spending $20 million on new Kentucky plant

By: Frank Esposito

February 12, 2013

BOWLING GREEN, KY. -- Alpla Inc. will spend more than $20 million to open a blow molding plant in Bowling Green by July.

The plant is expected to employ 72, according to a Feb. 12 news release from the office of Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear. McDonough, Ga.-based Alpla bought the 108,000 square-foot plant from the Bowling Green Economic Development Commission, which had built it to attract manufacturing work.

It's the fourth plant the commission has built and sold in the last four years, commission President and CEO Ron Bunch said in a Feb. 12 phone interview. He declined to disclose the sale price for the building, which can be expanded to 200,000 square feet if needed. Bunch added that plastics is one of the industries that the BGEDC has targeted for the area.

The plant's primary output will be bottles for Sun Products Corp., a maker of laundry detergent, fabric softener and similar products with a plant in Bowling Green. Alpla expects to spend $22.4 million to get the plant up and running. The firm is eligible to receive almost $2 million in tax benefits from the state by meeting job and investment targets.

In the release, Alpla North America President Jordok Schaeffler said the firm "is pleased to be expanding our manufacturing operations in Kentucky." Warren County Judge-Executive Michael Buchanon added that "it's another great day for South Central Kentucky when we can announce a new company joining our community."

For Alpla, the plant will be its second investment in the U.S. in less than a year. The firm also is spending $2 million to expand its blow molding plant in Jefferson City, Mo. Alpla Inc. Ranks as North America's fourth-largest blow molder, according to a recent Plastics News industry ranking, with annual sales of more than $800 million.

Alpla is a unit of global packaging giant Alpla Holdings of Hard, Austria. The firm has annual sales of almost $3.4 billion and operates 148 plants worldwide, including additional U.S. sites in St. Peter's, Mo.; Iowa City, Iowa; and Lima, Ohio.