In the midst of a recession, Arch Plastics Packaging LLC is completing a $1 million expansion that will create 50 new jobs at its container plant in Chattanooga, Tenn.
The project should be finished next month and will more than double the plant's size from 26,000 square feet to 60,000 square feet. The expansion is needed because of increased business, primarily from the pharmaceutical sector, facility manager Shital Rali said in a May 12 phone interview.
President and CEO Charles Amin is Arch's majority owner. Rali and other investors hold minority shares. The Chattanooga-based firm was founded in 2006 and employs 48. The expansion will allow Arch to increase its workforce to 100 by early 2011.
Arch operates five production lines using a combination of extrusion blow molding and injection stretch blow equipment. The firm produces bottles and containers made of PET and high density polyethylene for pills, medication, shampoo and similar products. One of Arch's largest customers is Chattem Chemicals Inc., a maker of pharmaceuticals and performance chemicals in Chattanooga.
Initially, the expansion will be used for warehouse space, with previous warehouse space being used for production, Rali said.
Arch benefited from getting several of its packages approved by pharmaceutical firms before the economy worsened, Rali said. The pharmaceutical market also has proved more resilient in recent years than other sectors of the economy, he added.
We haven't been affected as much. When people need their medication, they need it, he said.
Arch posted sales of $4 million in 2008 and expects to surpass the $5 million mark this year.