Alcan Composite USA Inc. has purchased land for possible expansion, but any activity won't happen for a year or more.
The Benton, Ky.-based maker of composite building products purchased nearly 12 acres about five miles from its main production facility. But any expansion depends on a potential acquisition by its parent company, said Randy Fox, director of community affairs. Montreal-based Alcan Inc. is negotiating to acquire an Italian foam maker. Fox would not disclose the identity of that family-owned firm, but he said the product would be new for Alcan.
``We don't even know if it's going to happen,'' Fox said in a Jan. 7 telephone interview. ``All we've done here is gotten proactive.''
Even if the deal does not go through, Fox said operations in Benton could benefit from the additional land. The main production facility currently is landlocked.
``Who knows what our future is going to be for warehouse needs,'' Fox said.
Last year, the firm produced a record amount of its Alucobond composite building product, with customers including Disney's Epcot Center. Alcan Composites increased production from five to seven days, and hired 10 workers.
Alucobond is created from extruded polyethylene, then laminated with aluminum. Fox would not disclose sales, but he said Alucobond production volume increased 5.8 percent in 2002. The firm also started an operation in Brazil last year.