Bunzl Extrusion Inc. is busting at the seams.
The Richmond, Va.-based company is expanding at four North American locations, including its newest in Monterrey, Mexico.
"Bunzl is a very financially secure company, and we have the ability to grow as the market demands and dictates," said Jim McLean, vice president of sales and marketing.
Although the company would not disclose the total amount invested, the initiative is part of an aggressive plan for double-digit growth, said President Tony Herbert.
Bunzl also is evaluating acquisition possibilities, especially in Texas, Mexico and Canada, Herbert said.
The profile, sheet and specialty tube producer also announced Jan. 2 that its eight subsidiaries are being renamed. For the first time, the individual business units will be grouped under the Bunzl name.
To differentiate, each company's location will appear as part of the name. For example, A&B Plastics-Southwest Inc. now is known as Bunzl Extrusion Phoenix Inc.
"We'll get much more bang for our buck by consolidating under one name," said Herbert, who took over Jan. 1 after the retirement of 27-year company veteran Neil Drozeski.
Herbert said one large organization is more lucrative and allows Bunzl to be responsive to increasingly sophisticated cus- tomers. The company will enjoy all the benefits of a large corporation, such as reduction of its supplier base, but will maintain strong local ties, he said.
With four branded products in medical, fencing, lighting and traffic control, the company wants to build better brand recognition with the Bunzl name, McLean said. The evolving world of e-commerce also makes it necessary to have a strong marketing position, he said.
"It's going to revolutionize the way you communicate with customers," he said.
On the expansion front, the Monterrey operation will double space to 50,000 square feet, with 10 extrusion lines by the end of the year.
The operation, Bunzl Extrusion de Mexico SA de CV, began serving the Latin American lighting market last year with five profile extrusion lines plus room for inventory, said Ko Das, vice president of operations. With the expansion, the plant will move into the refrigeration and industrial markets.
Bunzl's Massachusetts operations also are expanding and undergoing a change in identity.
Duall Plastics Inc. of Athol, Mass., and Pexco Inc. in Northborough, Mass., will be combined as Bunzl Extrusion Massachusetts Inc., operating under the same management team. The plants are just 40 miles apart.
Bunzl is erecting a 60,000-square-foot warehouse that allows for future growth at the Athol location, Das said. Officials are evaluating the site and expect the facility to be completed by the third quarter.
The Athol location focuses on fences, recreational products and other custom extrusion, McLean said.
Bunzl Extrusion Phoenix Inc., the company formerly known as A&B Plastics-Southwest Inc., occupies 40,000 square feet and serves the refrigeration and custom extrusion markets.
A 25 percent expansion of its technical facility will be complete in the first half of this year, McLean said.
"We're increasing our research and development area," he said.
In Washington, Bunzl Extrusion Yakima, formerly A&B Plastics Inc., will undergo a 20 percent expansion in fabrication with the addition of computer numerically controlled equipment, McLean said. The 130,000-square-foot facility serves the aerospace and automotive industries.
Bunzl Extrusion was known as America Filtrona Corp. before the parent company was purchased by Bunzl plc of London in 1997. Bunzl Extrusion had 2000 sales of more than $140 million.
In 2000, Bunzl acquired Davidson Plastics Corp. of Tacoma, Wash., and Pexco Inc. of Northborough.
With nine locations, Bunzl runs more than 80 million pounds of resin each year on 150 extruders. The company ranked 35th in Plastics News' recent listing of North American pipe, profile and tubing extruders.
Each of the company's units will be ISO 9000 certified by year's end, McLean said.