Westech Fence will more than double production capacity in a project scheduled to wrap up in the second quarter. Westech has been ``enjoying growth that eclipses market growth,'' officials said.
Westech said it had planned for explosive growth in the fence, decking and railing market, but demand is surpassing its expectations. ``We had projected a 25-30 percent growth rate for our products this year, based on the growing demand for vinyl fence and decking vs. wood and other materials. But we're seeing two to three times more business than we expected from many of our fabricators,'' said Bill Zell, sales and marketing director.
The Evansville, Ind.-based firm is expanding at three locations, officials said. The plans include extrusion line additions and tooling upgrades at plants in Evansville and Holmes, N.Y. In addition, it will equip a site in Calgary, Alberta, to handle fabrication and distribution. Officials would not disclose the investment size or the current number of extrusion lines.
Westech is a unit of Westlake Group of Cos., a Houston conglomerate that also owns North American Profiles Group, an extruder of window and door lineals.
``Our expectation is that we'll have the equipment installed by the end of April,'' Zell said in a Feb. 27 telephone interview.
The expansion will allow Westech to meet the needs of its customers over the next several years, officials said. The firm will install two lines in Evansville, its primary manufacturing site; it also will add two lines in New York. In Evansville, Westech has converted 4 acres into outdoor inventory storage. It has expanded fabrication and raw material storage as well. Westech has been headquartered there since 1998.
Sites in New York and Calgary primarily produce windows under Westlake's North American Profiles Group, which include the Fiberlux and Enerpro brands.
``Longer-term, we have greater expectations of that [Calgary] facility,'' Zell said, though he would not disclose details.
The firm runs 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It shuts down yearly for a 10-day maintenance period in December. Westech sells its products through regional distributors under the Presidio brand name.
Westech exports products to the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Singapore and South America.