FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. — Cramped for space even as the economy tightens, plastic sheet manufacturer is planning a major expansion.
The company, an extruder and molder of polyolefin sheet, will spend about $3.5 million to increase the size of its Henagar, Ala., plant by more than a third, said President Kapal Saigal.
Even with business down slightly in the company's core marine industry, Saigal said the firm could not wait any longer to hike plant size.
"We're hoping for another good year," said Saigal, interviewed Feb. 8 during the International Boatbuilders' Exhibition & Conference in Fort Lauderdale. "We're a little concerned about the economy. But we are extremely short of space."
The sheet fabricator, in business for more than 20 years, has watched growth outstrip capacity, Saigal said. The company has shifted from being a small product distributor to a manufacturer of sheet, rod and profile products from high and low density polyethylene and polypropylene.
The company's sheet products include bathroom partitions, kitchen cutting boards and a variety of marine board products, including dock bumpers, cabinetry, doors and windows. About 45 percent of its business is in the marine industry, Saigal said.
With the expansion, the company hopes to grow from expected sales of $14 million to $15 million in 2001 to about $23 million by the end of 2003, Saigal said.
The company will add 55,000 square feet to its existing 160,000-square-foot plant. The expansion will include the addition of two compression molding presses with clamping forces of 5,000 tons and several extrusion lines.
The project, due to be completed in June, will help the company process about 12 million more pounds of material each year, he said.
Polymer Industries still is determining how many employees it will add to its base of 85 workers.