Baltimore-based auxiliary equipment maker Novatec Inc. has opened a second factory, a 35,000-square-foot plant in Brookhaven, Pa., a suburb of Philadelphia.
This expansion, in an existing factory building, is driven by Novatec's growth in core markets and its penetration into the market for extrusion downstream equipment, officials said.
Novatec announced the Pennsylvania plant March 7.
“We reached a point where we were out-growing the ability for manufacturing to keep up with sales despite the fact that we previously expanded manufacturing here in Baltimore,” said Conrad Bessemer, Novatec president and CEO. “We need more space in the Baltimore facility to build both small and large NovaWheel dryers, central drying hoppers and the downstream extrusion products like, cutters, pullers, travelling saws as well as flood and vacuum tanks.”
Novatec spokesman John Kraft said the machinery maker has land adjacent to the Baltimore headquarters plant for an expansion, but officials decided to move some of the smaller equipment to Brookhaven, such as vacuum loaders, pumps and receivers, conveying accessories and electrical controls for several other products.
Novatec plans to move production of other products, such as cyclones and conveying accessories, to Brookhaven in the near future.
Novatec has moved several experienced employees to Brookhaven, and has hired additional local people. Fifteen people work at Brookhaven now, but Kraft said that is expected to grow to 25 within a few months, and then up to 50 in the next 18 months to two years.
Kraft said Novatec also is hiring at its Baltimore headquarters plant.
Meanwhile, at the Plastimagen trade show in Mexico City, Alex Vidal, Novatec's vice president of business development for Latin America, said the company's Mexico equipment business has been strong. The downstream extrusion equipment, which gets more assembly space in Baltimore because of the new Brookhaven plant, is winning sales in Mexico.
“We're doing a pretty good job of promoting the downstream equipment, especially in the automotive and medical markets,” Vidal said.
Medical extrusion lines are being installed in the maquiladora region as well as the Mexico City area, Vidal said. He added that most of the extruded medical products are being exported to the United States.