DETROIT — Newly named Clariant Performance Plastics added two new twin-screw extrusion lines in Millington, Md., late last year and plans to add four more at the site in the next seven months.
The new machines, in part, will replace three older ones that are being taken down at the site, said Paul Blanchard, the firm's sales and marketing director. The net gain of three machines will increase capacity for nylon, ABS and polycarbonate compounds to 25 million pounds annually.
The name change combines Bay Resins of Millington and Plastic Materials Co. of Milford, Del., under one banner. Specialty chemicals giant Clariant AG of Muttenz, Switzerland, has acquired both companies since 1996.
Clariant Performance Plastics is the compounding arm of Clariant Masterbatches Division, a Clariant branch in Easton, Md. Clariant Masterbatches ranked third in a recent industry survey of U.S. color compounders, based on 1997 sales.
Clariant Performance's materials are being used in sun visors in the 2000 Chevy Grand Am. Blanchard said his firm won the job because it compounds the three materials used in the part.
Automotive accounts for 40-45 percent of the unit's sales. Blanchard said the GM strike made it difficult for the unit to determine how much growth it saw in that market in 1998.