Alexandria expands plastics operations
ALEXANDRIA, MINN. — Minnesota manufacturer Alexandria Industries is beefing up plastics capabilities with a new 30,000-square-foot operation and additional injection molding equipment.
The Alexandria-based firm has some injection molding and polyurethane foam molding at an 8,500-square-foot plant in Wheaton, Ill. But those operations will be moved to the larger, recently acquired building in Wheaton. The company also acquired assets from a shuttered North Dakota molding plant that it will be able to use at the new site.
The changes will allow Alexandria to offer a wider mix of plastic components and more capacity, said President Joe Schabel in a Sept. 11 telephone interview.
Alexandria Industries also has production in aluminum, iron and steel, with plastics a key part of being able to offer customers parts in any material they need, Schabel said. The bulk of the company's products are functional parts for a variety of industries.
The new building in Wheaton will house Alexandria's plastics operations as well as tungsten/metal inert-gas welding services and assembly. Alexandria Industries is also hiring more plastics specialists, he said.
In addition to operations in Minnesota, Alexandria Industries has production in Carrollton, Texas, and Indianapolis.
Tasus building Alabama auto parts plant
BLOOMINGTON, IND. — Auto supplier Tasus Corp. will construct a $19 million injection molding plant in Florence, Ala., but the firm is setting up temporary production in the area to meet customer demand until the new plant opens.
Bloomington-based Tasus expects to hire 135 people in Florence during the next three to five years, the company said in a Sept. 11 news release.
While local contractors in Florence build the 104,000-square-foot facility, Tasus is outfitting a temporary site with four injection presses that will start up in November. The company is also in the process of hiring workers for that site, and will transfer them to the new plant, once it opens in October 2013, said President and CEO Melanie Hart. Tasus is posting open positions on its website.
Tasus' other facilities, in Georgetown, Texas, and Bloomington, are running near capacity, and shifting an expected $8 million in production to Florence will make room for new business at those locations, Hart said. The firm has also installed tighter racking systems at those sites to help clear production space.
Walt Barkalow, the Texas plant's general manager, will also serve as general manager of the Alabama operation.
The company is part of Tsuchiya Co. Ltd. of Nagoya, Japan, which also has operations in Hamilton, Ontario, and Georgetown. Tasus produces 52 million auto parts annually at its U.S operations, with primary production in injection molding. Its presses have clamping forces from 150-1,450 tons.
First US Con-Pearl plant slated for S.C.
GREENVILLE, S.C. — A German company that makes board, sheet and textiles out of recycled plastics is opening its first North American factory in Greenville, investing $14.3 million in Con-Pearl North America.
Con-Pearl North America is a subsidiary of Friedola-Tech GmbH of Geismar, Germany. The company is renovating part of an existing industrial building. The investment is expected to generate 51 jobs during the next five years, according to the Greenville Area Development Corp.
Friedola-Tech, which has its own recycling operation, makes lightweight boards, artificial leather, floor coverings, internal liners and injection molded parts. The company's major markets are packaging and automotive. Con-Pearl boards are made from polypropylene.
Production should begin in Greenville in October. Economic development officials announced the new plant Sept. 14. The company will begin hiring immediately.
Stefan Hoedt, business development director for Con-Pearl North America, said in a prepared statement that South Carolina “offers us an exceptional business environment and great access to markets in the U.S.”
Officials of Con-Pearl North America and Friedola-Tech were not available for additional comment.
The Coordinating Council for Economic Development approved a $150,000 grant for work on the building.