Lebanese packaging conglomerate Indevco Group is investing at least $13 million in a plastics factory in Texas, focusing on packaging for the petrochemical industry, according to the company and local economic development officials.
Ajaltoun, Lebanon-based Indevco has 51 manufacturing sites worldwide, mostly in the Middle East, and said the new facility in Longview, Texas, called Indevco Plastics, would expand its market in the region. It's apparently the company's first plastics manufacturing in the United States.
“For the past seven years, [Indevco] has established a significant presence in the U.S., serving the petrochemical industry with imported flexible packaging from member companies,” the company said in a statement. “With the expected surge in polymer exports, [Indevco] decided to set up a direct manufacturing presence in the U.S. to provide the petrochemical market with a one-stop shop for its packaging needs.”
The statement did not provide details of the investment but Susan Mazarakes-Gill, executive director of the Longview Economic Development Corp., said the company committed to spend $13.2 million over three years and hire 18 employees, in return for up to $650,000 in incentive payments from LEDC.
Indevco plans to move into what was previously a Bemis Co. Inc. plastics plant, she said. Bemis closed the polyethylene film plant in 2012.
“We are excited to establish a leading edge manufacturing presence in the U.S.,” said Robert Laird, executive vice president of operations for Indevco Plastics. “Our Longview facility will be well equipped to deliver our customers a high-quality, cost-efficient and cutting-edge packaging solution.”
The company said having plastics manufacturing in the “two lowest feedstock cost areas of the world,” the U.S. and the Middle East, would give it advantages.
Indevco Group already has sizable paper packaging and paper manufacturing operations in the United States, and large flexible plastics packaging and consumer product manufacturing operations throughout the Middle East.
It set up a joint venture in 2009 with Exopack Holding Corp. of Spartanburg, S.C., but that apparently only involved importing coextruded flexible packaging film from Indevco factories in Lebanon.
Privately owned Indevco Group employs 10,250 worldwide. Set up in 1955, it also has divisions that make packaging machinery, computer numerically controlled machined parts, automation and power and renewable energy products.