A new Middle Eastern wood-plastic composite deck maker, gearing up for commercial production, has signed a license agreement with Madison, Wis.-based Strandex Corp. to use Strandex's technology in its extrusions.
Doha, Qatar-based Doha Plastic plans to begin extruding in a $10 million, 160,000-square-foot plant there in August, said President Maan Said in a Feb. 20 e-mail interview. The firm will start with four Cincinnati Milacron twin-screw extruders that will allow Doha to extrude about 40 million pounds of deck board annually.
Currently, the company is running the largest recycling facility in Qatar, according to Said.
At full capacity, the company will employ 50 at the plant.
Doha Plastic will not market its products exclusively in the Middle East, but the company's composite deck boards are better equipped to deal with the region's humidity than traditional wood lumber, according to Said.
``Wood has limited uses in this region because of its short life span,'' he said. ``The tendency is to use other materials such as concrete.''
Doha Plastic's Strandex agreement includes the licensed use of Strandex's Strancel foaming technology, which is also used by other Strandex licensees like Toronto-based deck maker Composatron Manufacturing Inc.
Said said about 30 percent of the firm's products will incorporate the foaming technology.
``We expect this to grow significantly in the next few years as the marketplace begins to accept the product more readily,'' he said.
Low-cost labor, utilities and facilities, as well as proximity to polyethylene feedstock, will provide a competitive advantage to Doha Plastic, he added.