Brunswick Technologies Inc. will move into a new, 50,000-square-foot headquarters plant supplied by the city of Bruns-wick, Maine. The city is building the plant to BTI's specifications on 8 acres in an industrial park in Bruns-wick, just a few miles from the company's current digs there. Construction is slated for mid-May, said Bill Dubay, BTI president and chief operating officer.
BTI makes reinforced composites materials for markets including marine, infrastructure and transportation.
The company gradually will transfer its machinery to the building, beginning in January, with production reaching full swing by May 1996, Dubay said. BTI operates out of a 150-year-old mill in Brunswick. Despite its 40,000 square feet, the building's design creates too much unusable space, Dubay said. And the facility does not offer easy access for trucks.
``We needed to get our infrastructure arranged,'' he said.
About 11/2 years ago, BTI, looking to expand its business, approached both Brunswick and neighboring Bath, sparking a bidding war between the cities. In the end, Brunswick's financial package won BTI over.
The customized plant will cost the city about $1.5 million. BTI will lease it, at discounted rates, for 10 years, with options for a five-year renewal and a 25,000-square-foot expansion. Dubay said the new building already offers BTI enough room to expand its capacity by about one-third, which it plans to do by year's end. It also will add a machine to do samplings, he said.
Dubay would not disclose sales for the private firm.
``We have grown basically at 50 percent [in sales dollars] a year,'' he said.
BTI, which employs 50, designs and builds the machines that knit together fiberglass rovings with nylon or polyester yarn to produce a structurally reinforced fabric. Its process technology orients rovings in five different directions to build a heavy-weight fabric in a single step, without a loss in machine speed, Dubay said. The material is used in such products as automotive bumper beams, diving boards, boats, bridge decks and truck trailer panels. Vetrotex Certainteed Corp. of Valley Forge, Pa., is its primary supplier of glass rovings.
BTI's fabric technology is part of a three-year, $13.5 million project funded by the National Institute of Standards and Technology that also involves DuPont Co. of Wilmington, Del.; Dow Chemical Co. of Midland, Mich.; and Hardcore Composites Inc. of Newark, Del. The partners ultimately will build a bridge deck out of superheavyweight glass using the Seemann Composite Resin Infusion Molding Process, known as Scrimp.
Cost is key to the project's overall success, Dubay said. His company's goal is continued development of its ability to orient fiber at very high speeds and very heavy weights. Its technology has brought reinforced fabrics from higher-priced specialities into a broader, generally accepted price range, he said.