Firestone expanding with Nev. TPO facility
INDIANAPOLIS - Firestone Building Products Co. is expanding its reach across the West by constructing a thermoplastic polyolefins plant and distribution center in Las Vegas.
The 256,000-square-foot building already is under construction and is expected to be completed by the third quarter of 2007.
``This strategic expansion helps us better meet growing regional demand for heat-reflective UltraPly TPO roofing systems,'' Firestone President Mike Gorey said in a news release. Gorey is also chairman, chief executive officer and president of BFS Diversified Products LLC, the parent of Firestone.
The new building will help Firestone push its TPO membrane production line number to five. It also has a TPO production facility in Wellford, S.C., as well as a line at a plant in Tuscombia, Ala.
The Tuscombia plant is operated by GenFlex Roofing Systems LLC, a company acquired Sept. 27 from Omnova Solutions Inc.
Firestone, which phased out its PVC offerings in 2005, plans to do the same at GenFlex by mid-2007 in conjunction with completion of the Las Vegas facility.
``As a safe and environmentally friendly option, TPO represents the future of the thermoplastic roofing market,'' Gary Thompson, GenFlex general manager, said in a news release.
GenFlex said it will add a second TPO line at its Tuscumbia facility after the new plant is finished.
Firestone's experience with TPOs dates back more than 20 years. GenFlex introduced its TPO line in 1996.
Firestone makes single-ply thermoplastic and asphalt-based roofing systems, polyisocyanurate insulation and accessories for commercial roofing.
Jeld-Wen to launch door plant in spring
KLAMATH FALLS, ORE. - Window and door maker Jeld-Wen Inc. plans to open a 200,000-square-foot plant in North Springfield, Vt., in the spring.
The facility will make interior doors, as does Jeld-Wen's plant in nearby Ludlow, Vt., which opened in 1994. The leased North Springfield plant is about 15 miles away. Klamath Falls-based Jeld-Wen plans to employ 130-170 at the new building.
Jeld-Wen uses a variety of materials to make its doors, including wood, vinyl, aluminum, fiberglass and composites, said spokeswoman Lynne Butterworth.
The company's new space will be in a former machine and tool factory, said Bob Flint, executive director of Springfield Regional Development Corp., in a Dec. 19 telephone interview.
``They've been a great employer,'' he said.
Flint touted the area's workforce, technology infrastructure, and location along Interstate 91 as benefits of locating in southwest Vermont.
``Vermont is special,'' he said. ``You can have the setting that folks in more urban areas just fantasize about, but still get work done. We have a great workforce up here.''
30-year-old Century adds plant, capacity
NEW WATERFORD, OHIO - Century Container Corp. is marking its 30th year in business with a new plant, increased capacity and an expanded product line.
The New Waterford company, which makes high density polyethylene pails and lids, is converting a warehouse into its second injection molding plant, increasing capacity by about 80 percent. The recently opened plant makes lids, art director Dane Lavin said in a Dec. 27 telephone interview.
The firm's sister company - Century Industries Corp., also in New Waterford - makes roof coating, driveway sealers and joint compounds. In 1977, officials decided to bring the company's container and packaging work in-house, marking its entry into plastics processing.
Century operates injection presses with clamping forces up to 880 tons. Its pails range from 1-6 gallons, including four new sizes the firm is adding to its product line.
``These new molds are a key part of our multimillion-dollar expansion,'' President Jill Brothers said in a news release.
The firm has high expectations, said plant manager Roger Dobbs.
``Our goal is to increase sales by 25 percent,'' he said. ``We're small. But we're up and coming.''
Century reported sales of $12.6 million for the fiscal year ended March 31.
Century's buckets are used by packagers and ``there are a variety of companies that use them as promotional items, or that sell them just as utility pails,'' Lavin said. Retailer Menards buys pails with its company logo on them from Century, he said.
Refurbished facility to be new K&K home
SOUTHBRIDGE, MASS. - K&K Thermoforming Inc., which makes packaging primarily for the medical and electronics industries, is refurbishing a 91,500-square-foot facility that it plans to use as its new home.
``We're expanding because of business growth. We're moving out of our present facility and into a facility that will have a clean room,'' said President Hal Keller Sr.
He said in a telephone interview that the company acquired the industrial building in Southbridge on Nov. 1, and plans to move from a 17,000-square-foot building in the same town. The company will use about 30,000 square feet of its new facility and will lease the rest.
The firm plans to be in its new home by Feb. 1. The facility will have a clean room that could be as large as 15,000 square feet, but its size is still being determined.
K&K employs 18 and will hire two or three more people, Keller said. It hopes to reach 25 employees within the next two years.
The company was founded in 1999.
K&K received a $2 million tax-exempt bond supported by a $200,000 mortgage insurance guarantee for the project from MassDevelopment, the state's finance and development authority.
MassDevelopment works with businesses, financial institutions and local officials to stimulate economic growth. Since 2004, it has financed or managed 586 state projects, representing an investment of more than $4 billion in the state's economy.