Norton Packaging adding space, jobs
HAYWARD, CALIF. - Injection molder Norton Packaging Inc. is expanding its facility in Hamlet, Ind., by 30,000 square feet and adding 50 jobs to increase production of plastic containers.
The Hayward company's 40,000-square-foot facility currently employs 47, said Charles Weaver, executive director of Starke County Development Foundation.
Norton, which has been in business since 1901, has operated in Hamlet since 1996, Weaver said in a Dec. 6 telephone interview. Starke County Development Foundation owns the building, but Norton pays insurance, taxes and upkeep on the structure.
``Ultimately, they will exercise their option to purchase the building,'' Weaver said.
Norton had considered moving the operation to Ohio, said Weston Sedgwick, spokesman for Indiana Economic Development Corp. That group's incentives included as much as $56,000 in training grants and $367,000 in tax credits, with actual totals based on employment and investment, according to IEDC.
Starke County granted a 10-year tax abatement on the building addition and a five-year tax abatement on all new manufacturing equipment.
Norton Packaging officials were not available for comment.
Weaver said Norton will add production of composite paint cans and boost production of 5-gallon containers.
Flextronics opens third plant in India
SINGAPORE - Flextronics International Ltd. recently opened its third plant in India, and the company said it considers the country one of its main production centers in Asia for electronics manufacturing.
Flextronics India's general manager and director, Ayekavadi Gururaj, said the Singapore-based company also considers Vietnam a potential expansion center in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations region.
The company has vertically integrated facilities in Pondicherry and the new plant in Sriperumbudur, near Chennai.
The Sriperumbudur plant offers design, injection molding, printed circuit-board assembly, part assembly, distribution, logistics and repair services. The company is investing $200 million in the first phase of the 250-acre site.
The plant was inaugurated Nov. 4 by Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
``We are focused on growing our global footprint, especially in low-cost regions of the world,'' Gururaj said.
In addition to electronics, Singapore-based Flextronics also serves automotive, marine, aerospace, computing, consumer digital, industrial, infrastructure, medical and mobile telephone customers.
Plasticum purchases some Bespak assets
MILTON KEYNES, ENGLAND - Medical-device maker Bespak plc has sold the assets of its consumer dispensers division to Dutch consumer packaging producer Plasticum Group BV.
Bespak announced in August it would withdraw this year from consumer dispenser production, its smallest division, which recorded a £1 million ($1.9 million) loss on annual sales of just £5.5 million ($10.4 million) in the company's last fiscal year.
Plasticum agreed to acquire customized machinery and equipment from Bespak's plant in King's Lynn, England, which makes trigger sprayers, mist pumps, lotion dispensers and continuous spray valves. Plasticum will move the equipment to its own operations in Britain and the Netherlands.
Tilburg, Netherlands-based Plasticum injection molds plastic spray caps, closures and containers for the personal-care, food and household-products markets at facilities in Tilburg and Ede in the Netherlands and in Alfreton, England. Plasticum also operates a packaging unit in Waldkirch, Germany.
Bespak of Milton Keynes said it expects to redeploy some of the King's Lynn operation's 54 employees in the company's growing inhaled drug-delivery operations, also in King's Lynn.
Bespak has other sites in Milton Keynes, Indianapolis and Kent, Ohio.
Alcoa Kama using bio-based materials
HAZLETON, PA. - The Alcoa Kama sheet extrusion division of Reynolds Food Packaging will begin running bio-based resins from Cereplast Inc. of Hawthorne, Calif.
``We're going to be running it on existing lines,'' said Juan Lopez, vice president of sales and marketing with Alcoa Kama in Hazleton. The company will begin using the resins at its facility in Rogers, Minn., by the first quarter of 2007. It will extrude the sheet in roll stock form and market it to the food-service industry. The deal is in response to rising interest in bio-based plastics as some cities look at banning polystyrene products.
In other news from Cereplast, the state of Massachusetts awarded the company a nearly three-year contract to supply food-service products including cutlery, plates, cups, straws, food containers and trash bags.
Russian processor considers expansion
DZERZHINSK, RUSSIA - Leading Russian acrylic resin and sheet supplier Dzerzhinsk Org Steclo is planning an 80 million euro ($101 million) expansion and modernization project at its plant in Dzerzhinsk, provided it can finance the project.
The joint stock company plans to raise its methyl methacrylate capacity, increasing extruded acrylic sheet output, and automate manufacturing of cast acrylic sheet.
DOS, which dates from the mid-1930s, said it is studying its borrowing options to finance the ambitious plan. Its directors are examining possible ``integration with a strategic partner'' or attracting a financial investor, it said in a news release.
During the Soviet era, the plant employed 12,000. DOS can make as much as 60 million pounds of MMA per year. Under the proposed expansion, the company gradually would raise MMA capacity to more than 100 million pounds per year. Also, DOS aims to install its first automated cast acrylic sheet line, with an output of 2.2 million pounds per month.