Invista is the newest player in the global engineering polymers market.
At a June 24 news conference at NPE2009 in Chicago, Wichita, Kan.-based Invista announced plans to begin production of nylon 6/6 resin at several locations, including Chattanooga, Tenn., and Kingston, Ontario.
The launch coincides with the expiration of a non-compete agreement with DuPont Co., which sold its Invista fibers unit to Koch Industries Inc. in 2004. Koch then combined its KoSa PET unit with Invista to create a separate firm.
Kurt Burmeister executive vice president of Invista's new engineering polymers unit said his firm is uniquely equipped to revolutionize the nylon engineering polymers business, after collaborating with clients to tailor products to their needs.
We worked hard to listen and anticipate what customers want in a global material supplier, he said. We're fully integrated with high-quality, cost-controlled ingredients and have the potential to be a strong player in the engineering polymers market.
Burmeister declined to say what Invista's initial nylon production capacities will be. He added that the firm will work with toll compounders in North America, Europe and Asia, but he declined to identify specific firms.
Initial products will include nylon 6/6, but Invista eventually could add nylon 6 and reinforced PET to its product mix. Some available nylon 6/6 grades also will have post-industrial recycled content, Burmeister said. Customers have expressed a high interest in sustainability and recycling options, he added.
Potential markets include automotive, electrical, consumer products and sporting goods.
Invista officials also said the new business will be unaffected by a lawsuit filed against Invista late last year by DuPont. The lawsuit claims Invista violated the non-compete agreement between the two firms in numerous ways.
Invista's PET business also is recovering from the late 2008 closings of PET plants in Greer, S.C., and Millhaven, Ontario.
A company official said that the PET unit has been helped by having a more diversified portfolio that includes a fair amount of non-bottle PET supply, in areas like sheet.