Techmer targeting Brazil for new site
CLINTON, TENN. Specialty concentrate maker Techmer PM LLC is heading out of North America for the first time, with plans to open a site in Brazil by the end of 2010.
Clinton-based Techmer plans to enter the Brazilian market via an acquisition or a joint venture, President John Manuck said in a recent telephone interview. The firm plans to operate a site in the São Paulo area with three twin-screw extrusion lines.
Manuck described Brazil as a growing and progressive market.
We currently export significant quantities of material to Brazil from our plant in Clinton, said Manuck, who founded Techmer in 1981. And those amounts have been increasing.
Our plant [in Brazil] will be designed to make high-performance products, not commodities. We're not talking about white masterbatch here.
Markets for Techmer's color and additive masterbatch lineup in Brazil include non-wovens, fibers, films and molded parts. In preparation for the move into Brazil, Techmer's Web site has been available in Portuguese for more than a year.
Manuck's son, Ryan Howley, will be relocating to Brazil to run the company's efforts there. Howley's wife, Marina, is a native of Brazil.
Techmer employs about 600 at six U.S. plants.
Additional capacity in works for O'Neil
JASPER, TENN. O'Neil Color & Compounding Corp. is adding capacity for the second time in less than two years.
This time, Jasper-based O'Neil will retrofit a continuous mixing line with new blending, feeding, palletizing and packaging equipment. The project will be complete in December and is expected to increase the line's annual capacity by 12 million pounds, officials said.
This expansion was needed to handle new business obtained during 2009, O'Neil President Mark Bruner said in a recent news release.
We have been running at or near capacity because of remarkable growth of our [thermoplastic elastomer] products in various markets, as well as solid growth in color masterbatch sales.
In early 2008, O'Neil added a compounding extrusion line in Jasper with 12 million pounds per year of capacity. The firm also has retrofitted several lines at its plant in Garfield, N.J., since 2007.
O'Neil's compounds include Faraprene-brand TPEs and Faralloy-brand specialty compounds, which can be based on thermoplastic olefins or other resins.
O'Neil Color & Compounding is a unit of extruded sheet maker Primex Plastics Corp. of Richmond, Ind.
PolyOne advances sustainable lineup
AVON LAKE, OHIO PolyOne Corp. is moving ahead with efforts to commercialize its lineup of sustainable compounds.
The Avon Lake-based firm is preparing to scale up production of its Resound-brand biopolymers, which are blends and alloys of polylactic acid or polyhydroxyalkanoate bioplastics with standard polymer systems.
The products have at least 30 percent biopolymer content, but recent development work has created materials with biopolymer content as high as 50 percent, PolyOne's Cecil Chappelow said in a recent interview in Avon Lake.
There's continued interest in sustainability, said Chappelow, chief innovation officer.
Companies want to be green and get their carbon footprint down. They're not going back to the old ways of doing things, Chappelow said.
He added that PolyOne has seen interest in the use of Resound in injection molded durables applications, where the products have more value.
Resound materials are intended to be drop-ins with standard resins.
PolyOne also is marketing Versaflex Bio, a thermoplastic elastomer made by its GLS unit that can have 70 percent biocontent. In early 2010, PolyOne also expects to commercialize reFlex-brand bioplasticizers made through a joint venture with agriculture giant Archer Daniels Midland.
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