TROISDORF, GERMANY (Sept. 14, 11:15 a.m. ET) — Extrusion machinery producer Reifenhäuser GmbH & Co. KG has had a record year, said Chairman Bernd Reifenhäuser at the company's 100th jubilee event at its Troisdorf headquarters on Sept. 10.
He did not reveal specific figures but said 2010/2011 has been an all-time record year for the company in terms of both turnover and incoming orders. During the 2008/2009 recession, the company suffered a large drop in turnover from a record level of 420 million euros to around 315 million euros, excluding Kiefel Extrusion.
Speaking to more than 1,600 employees and guests at the jubilee party, he said he was proud that the company had decided in the middle of the recession to invest 30 million euros into R&D over a five-year period. This investment included “expansion of the world's largest film technology center and construction of the world's largest non-wovens technology center.”
At the jubilee party there was a tent with a smith working a forge, illustrating the origins of the company when it was founded in 1911. It was not until 1948 that the company made its first 48GFS30 extruder with a 30mm diameter screw for plastics processing, initially calling it at that time a “Schneckenpresse” (screw press).
The company had 50 employees by 1950.
Christian Hopmann, the recently appointed director of the IKV plastics processing institute in Aachen, Germany, made a guest speech on future trends and opportunities in the plastics industry.
Hopmann sees demographic trends as favoring plastics packaging as a growing number of single-person households give rise to a higher number of smaller packages. He highlighted the continuing growth prospects for packaging film, especially in developing countries, where he said around 50 percent of food is wasted during transportation.
He said: “1.5 grams of plastic film can increase the shelf life of food by 30 days. There are excellent prospects for cutting the 50 percent of food wasted in transport at a time when people still suffer hunger.”