Custom compounder ECM Plastics Inc. is expanding with a new twin-screw extruder, and the Worcester-based firm is redesigning its footprint by moving some warehousing to nearby Clinton, Mass.
“We're in the process of installing a Leistritz 75-millimeter twin-screw that will probably give us another 15 percent extra capacity — and because of that, we're adding some outside warehousing,” President Wayne Marquis said in a recent telephone interview.
The new extruder should be in full operation by September, Marquis said. It will be the company's 10th twin-screw extruder and its second 75-millimeter model.
Overall, its production extruders range in size from 40-75 millimeters. ECM also has some extruders it uses for laboratory purposes.
ECM has leased 48,000 square feet of space in Clinton, which will be used primarily for warehousing. But the company may do some blending or pulverizing at the site in the future, Marquis said. ECM operates out of a 120,000-square-foot facility in Worcester that it bought in 2000. Marquis said ECM has no plans to move out of the city.
In recent years, ECM has added new machinery every year. The company has 140 employees and expects to increase its staff by about 10 percent as the machinery begins production, he said.
The expansion is “really a combination of some customers growing and the addition of new customers,” Marquis said. “In the last few years, we beefed up our development staff.”
He said that while some larger companies have cut back, ECM has added research and development, and that has allowed the firm to “co-develop work with our customers.”
In addition to compounding, ECM does custom color matching and formulates specialty additives.
The company also uses 40,000 square feet of warehouse space across the street from its Worcester site.