ORLANDO, FLA. -- Amcor Rigid Plastics USA Inc. is expanding its presence in the Southeast with the grand opening Jan. 24 of a 500,000-square-foot facility in Orlando that boosts its bottling capacity to include the ability to make preforms in-house.
"We started moving in April and May. We were already in Orlando but we were transferring lines from an older facility. We still have a line that needs to be moved over," said spokeswoman Shelley Steele by phone.
The company is moving a few miles from a 168,000-square-foot facility to a leased building in the Airport Industrial Park of Orlando. The $20 million investment included infrastructure improvements that boosted its power, and the addition of resin silos and a cooling system.
Amcor said that the company is responding to a strong market demand for beverage and pharmaceutical packaging. The company is running new hot-fill and cold PET beverage bottles for sports drinks and orange drinks, along with high density polyethylene pharmaceutical containers for the first time.
"During this strong period of growth for our business, we're thrilled to be able to bring our multitechnology and multimaterial offerings to this expanded new facility in Orlando," Larry Weber, vice president and general manager for Amcor's North American beverage business unit, said in a news release.
The facility houses manufacturing, warehousing and office space. Steele said it will improve efficiencies as the company will now be able to make most of its preforms in-house. Previously, they were shipped from other sites.
Amcor has been making bottles in Orlando since 1979. It worked with local and state officials to find the new space, which was announced in November 2011. The grand opening celebration was attended by 140 people and Amcor was presented with the Defense Department's Patriot Award for its support of the National Guard and reservists.
"We are very appreciative of the support of our local and regional officials," added Steele.
The company said that it will eliminate three offsite warehousing sites. It will also mean that Amcor will have a net increase of 29 jobs, expecting to boost its employees to 150 by next year.
Amcor Rigid Plastics operates 65 facilities in 12 countries. Its parent, Amcor Ltd.., is headquartered in Melbourne, Australia.