Ems-Grivory (North America) Inc. has commissioned a 5 million-pound-per-year expansion of its nylon manufacturing plant in Sumter, S.C.
Ems-Grivory America President and business unit leader Guido Hobi revealed the expansion plan at NPE in Chicago. He did not disclose the cost of the project, but said his firm also will build a technical service center in Sumter. The company, whose parent is in Ems, Switzerland, has been manufacturing in Sumter for 26 years.
Hobi said his firm prides itself as a specialty nylon house, eschewing commodity nylon markets such as carpet fibers. Ems particularly targets barrier markets for packaging and vehicle fuel systems.
High-temperature aromatic nylons and high-clarity nylons are other fortes, Hobi said.
Nylons meet competition from glass-filled, lower-priced polyolefin compounds and from more costly engineering resins, but nylons have carved a big niche in the middle of the property-vs.-cost pyramid, according to Hobi.
Nylons are core to Ems-Grivory's Performance Polymers business unit. Other production plants in the unit are in Switzerland, Germany and Taiwan. Hobi said Ems-Grivory is formulating plans for a plant in China, but details haven't been finalized. A plant in India could be several years further down the road.
Ems-Grivory's other main business area is fine chemicals and engineering, encompassing such markets as powder coating, adhesion promoters, air bag initiators and fine chemicals.
Ems-Grivory AG trades publicly on the Zurich stock exchange, but the Blocher family has a majority share of the stock.