Packaging Direct expands into 1 plant
GLADWIN, MICH. - Packaging thermoformer Packaging Direct Inc. will consolidate production in a new facility going up in Gladwin.
The firm is constructing a 93,500-square-foot building and will begin occupying it in June.
Initially the operation will have seven or eight thermoforming lines, including trim presses, but it will have 25 or more once the company relocates lines from existing facilities in Gladwin and Beaverton, Mich., according to Chief Financial Officer Jim Hop.
By October, the new operation should be at full speed, Hop said in a telephone interview.
Hop estimates the cost of the building and new equipment will be about $4.5 million, financed mainly by a $3.5 million industrial development revenue bond sold by Michigan Economic Development Corp.
A few years ago, Packaging Direct contemplated expansion by constructing an addition to its Gladwin plant and moving Beaverton equipment there. Instead, the company will use the original, 34,000-square-foot Gladwin facility for research and development and product sampling. It will vacate the leased, 22,000-square-foot building in Beaverton, now its headquarters plant.
With the hiring of about five more staff members for the expansion, Packaging Direct's employment should reach 42.
Packaging Direct mainly thermoforms PET sheet into produce containers now preferred by supermarkets and grocery stores. It also processes some polypropylene sheet and corn-based-plastic sheet.
Alcan Composites closing Ind. facility
BENTON, KY. - Foam board producer Alcan Composites USA plans to close its Richmond, Ind., plant April 9.
Alcan will move production to facilities in Glasgow, Ky., and Statesville, N.C., that it acquired last fall when it bought Uniwood/Fome-Cor Division of Nevamar Co. LLC.
The closure will eliminate 28 jobs, including nine salaried employees.
``This decision is difficult, but has been made necessary by the unsustainable competitive position of the Richmond plant,'' Alcan Composites President Jim Burr said in a news release.
Alcan Composites is based in Benton. It leases the 112,000-square-foot Richmond facility.
Company spokeswoman Pat Persico said Richmond's sole product is board with a core of expanded polystyrene sandwiched between laminated paper layers. Alcan Composites' other products include boards with EPS laminated to aluminum and other materials. The board products are used for displays, graphic arts, furniture and construction.
Parent company Alcan Inc. of Montreal entered foam boards production a few years ago through its merger with Alusuisse-Lonza.
TRC preparing for `bigger' business
MIDDLEFIELD, OHIO - Installing two new, 500-ton injection molding machines this month, TRC Manufacturing Inc. is looking for bigger business.
``The trend is toward larger parts, so we are transitioning from smaller to larger presses to accommodate the opportunities that are out there,'' said President Terry Ross.
TRC Manufacturing operates 24 presses in a 45,000-square-foot facility with molding and brush-making divisions. The company makes products for the vacuum cleaner, housewares, plumbing, electrical and automotive industries.
Ross said the company's largest presses are part of a $200,000 equipment expansion. The 500-ton presses will be production-ready by April 1. Two more 350-ton presses will be installed in mid-April.
Currently, the Middlefield-based company has presses with clamping forces of 110-385 tons.
Ross said the larger-size injection molding machines will give the company the capability for more automotive work, but the presses also can be used for such items as fax machines, keyboards and telephones.
TRC Manufacturing was started in 1947 and employs 50. With the new equipment, the company may add 10-12 workers, according to Ross.