Israeli home products injection molder Starplast is setting up a manufacturing plant in Houston, its first in the United States, to meet growing local demand.
An Oct. 9 announcement from Jones Lang Lasalle Inc., the U.S. real estate firm for the Haifa, Israel-based plastics company, said Starplast signed a lease for a 181,000-square-foot facility in north Houston, near George Bush Intercontinental Airport.
"Starplast decided to manufacture in the U.S. in part, due to increased customer demand for U.S.-made goods," said Ryan Fuselier, with JLL. "They chose Houston in particular, because of the availability of plastic resins and a seasoned labor force with a deep knowledge of the plastics industry."
JLL said the Houston plant would serve as Starplast's manufacturing base in the United States. Starplast CEO Danny Schwartz declined additional comment.
JLL said the property includes cross dock configuration, 28-foot clear heights and fully-fenced outside storage.
On its website, Starplast said it was founded in 1967, and that 90 percent of its production is exported to Europe, North America, Australia and Japan. The company started manufacturing in the United States in 2012, with custom molders using Starplast tools. In a 2011 interview with Plastics News, company managers said they were considering U.S. manufacturing options.
At the time, the privately owned company said it had sales of about $100 million, with 450 employees and injection molding machines up to 2,500 tons clamping force.
The company said it was Israel's second-largest injection molding company, with 110 molding machines. Schwartz said the company is larger now but he did not provide more details.
In addition to molded housewares and storage containers, the company makes outdoor play equipment under the Starplay name. In 2012, it counted major American and European retailers, including Walmart and Target, among its customers.