Transilwrap Co. Inc. of Chicago recently completed an expansion at a facility in Richmond, Ind., and is constructing a new plant in Hanover Township, Pa., near Allentown. The plastic film manufacturer and converter company plans to use the 38,000-square-foot expansion in Richmond for warehouse space. The $700,000 project increased the size of the plant to 173,000 square feet and allowed Transilwrap to consolidate the warehousing operation that was housed at a separate facility.
``We have improved the logistics of order processing by running one building instead of two,'' said Mark Stevens, the Richmond plant manager. ``Before, we had to ship finished goods from the manufacturing facility to the off-site warehouse and then to the customer.''
Additional loading docks were added as a result of the expansion. The company increased from four to seven docks. As well, the research and development department benefited by moving into a larger space with multiple pilot production lines available.
Joe Ewen, plant director of production engineering, said the plant may use the freed-up space for new equipment to accommodate future growth of the manufacturing division. The plant's capacity could increase by as much as 20 percent.
The Richmond plant extrudes and converts thermal laminating film made from nylon, polyethylene, polypropylene and polyester, and printable sheet made from polystyrene.
Products manufactured include Trans-Kote-brand thermal laminating film used on identification cards, menus and book jackets and PRO-Print brand of printable plastic sheet used for maps, posters and displays.
The new facility in Hanover Township will replace a plant four miles away in Lower Nazareth Township, Pa., which opened in 1988. Transilwrap outgrew its Nazareth plant and needed room for the offices, converting and shipping areas to grow.
Construction on the plant was to begin the third week of May with plans to move in Oct. 1. Officials would not disclose how much is being invested in the plant, which will sit on 61/2 acres.
The new plant will be 50,000 square feet, 17,000 square feet larger than the current plant. The 35 employees at Nazareth will be moved to Hanover. John Brolsma, operations manager, expects ``five to 10 employees to be added in the next few years.''
Brolsma said Transilwrap recycles corrugated sheet, the trimmings from the film and the cores the film is wrapped around. Because recycling all these materials takes space, Brolsma said the recycling operation also ran out of room.
``We needed to expand this aspect of the company as well and we'll run our business more efficiently,'' Brolsma said.
Though the plant will not produce film, it will convert the polyester and PP film from wide rolls of 60 inches down to widths of one-half inch. Transilwrap then sells that material to companies in the coating and laminating markets as well as to the fiberglass, stationery and packaging industries.
Transilwrap ranked 74th last year in Plastics News' ranking of North American film and sheet manufacturers. The firm reported sales of more than $50 million for the fiscal year ended June 30. Corporate sales were listed at more than $100 million.