Julio Garcia e Hijos, Argentina's largest domestic producer of color concentrate and compound masterbatches, in July will begin operating a new subsidiary in Argentina dedicated to unique colors and specialty customer orders, the company said at Argenplás.
The subsidiary, Concentrados y Compuestos SA, will open production next month at a new factory in Pilar, Argentina, and focus on specialty thermoplastic masterbatch orders, said Claudio Garcia, director of Julio Garcia e Hijos.
The expansion effort by the Garcia family is aimed at freeing up its two existing plants, which today produce 1,500 metric tons per month of color concentrate and compounds, to expand general production without losing the chance to grow in the niche market of unique orders.
“This new company and plant will hopefully give us the new market segment in South America we don't have today, and should eventually feature a capacity of 60 percent more than the [almost 40 million pounds per year] we currently achieve,” Garcia said.
Around 70 percent of Julio Garcia e Hijos' masterbatch orders are now focused in polypropylene and polyethylene, with the remainder divided among a range of engineering plastics. More than 90 percent of sales remain in Argentina, where the company competes with U.S. producer Ampacet Corp. of Tarrytown, N.Y.
Masterbatch sales in Argentina this year may match last year's figures or decline slightly, Garcia said, based on local government import tariffs curtailing growth, and reduced demand in neighboring markets like Brazil.
The new Concentrados y Compuestos SA should reach 30-40 percent of its operating capacity by year's end, he added.
Argenplás took place June 18-22 in Buenos Aires.