GE Plastics plans to invest $100 million to improve its massive Mount Vernon, Ind., site this year.
The Pittsfield, Mass.-based company also announced it has completed its $310 million purchase of engineering resins compounder LNP Engineering Plastics Inc.
LNP will keep its name and will remain in Exton, Pa. Combining LNP with GE's custom engineered products business will create a business with 1,100 employees at 12 locations in eight countries.
Combined North American compounding sales for GE Plastics and LNP - including blends and alloys based on polycarbonate and ABS - are estimated at $825 million, about 9 percent of the North American market.
GE bought LNP from Kawasaki Steel Corp. of Tokyo, which no longer considered LNP a core unit after its merger with NKK Corp., another Japanese steel maker.
Robert Schulz, LNP president and chief executive officer, will become the firm's chairman, with longtime GE veteran Charles Crew assuming Schulz's prior positions. Crew had been president and senior managing director of GE Plastics Europe.
In Mount Vernon, GE will spend $29 million on environmental, health and safety improvements and another $21 million in product-development facilities. The remaining $50 million will be split between process efficiency improvements, equipment upgrades and new product development.
GE previously announced it will eliminate more than 160 jobs in Mount Vernon because of a downturn in sales of its Lexan-brand polycarbonate and other products. Of those cuts, 70 will come from the recent closings of a pair of production lines for bisphenol-A, a key PC feedstock, according to GE Plastics spokesman Jay Pomeroy. The lines represented 30-35 percent of the site's total BPA feedstock.