Nexeo Solutions has opened a major new resin distribution site in Illinois and has made some additions to its compounds and filaments line card as well.
Nexeo, which is based in The Woodlands, Texas, now is operating a 158,000-square-foot facility in Montgomerry, Ill., outside of Chicago. The $13 million site is the largest in Nexeo's network and marks the first time that the firm has built a distribution facility "from the ground up," officials said in an email.
The Montgomery site employs about 20 and has double the warehousing and bulk processing capacity of Nexeo's previous location in Franklin Park, Ill., which has closed. The Montgomery location also has the space to quadruple production levels to support Nexeo's customers' future growth.
The new site makes use of 12,000 pallets, two high-speed pack-out lines, one manual pack-out line, four rail spurs with total capacity of 36 railcars, 14 loading docks and six new storage silos.
The facility also has an advanced box-filling automation system, pallet dispensing, upgraded blower technologies and two pack-out and blower stations, as well as an advanced shipping and receiving area for optimized truck and traffic flow.
Officials said that the new location will enable Nexeo to keep its on-time delivery rate near 99 percent, which they say the firm has accomplished with its own GPS-enabled private fleet of trucks.
"It's a modern facility that houses the latest supply chain technology with optimized truck and traffic flow, allowing us to service our customers faster than ever before," said Shawn Williams, the company's senior plastics vice president, in an email. "With double the warehousing and bulk processing capability than we previously had, we can offer our customers same-day and next-day service."
New materials offerings from Nexeo include nylon compounds from Albis Plastics Corp., PVC compounds from Aurora Plastics and plastic filament for 3D printing from Polymaker Industrial.
The agreement with Albis covers compounds based on both prime and recycled grades of nylon 6 and 6/6 in the U.S. and Canada. These materials are marketed under the Altech and Altech Eco brand names and are made at Albis' compounding plant in Duncan, S.C.
Altech nylon 6 and 6/6 compounds are used in applications such as automotive, electrical and electronics, industrial, appliances and power tools. Altech Eco includes a range of filled and unfilled nylon 6/6 compounds based on high-quality post-industrial feedstock, which allows Albis to claim "near to prime" properties in the final product.
Albis is a unit of materials firm Albis Plastics GmbH of Hamburg, Germany, with North American headquarters in Duncan.
Nexeo also in January became national distributor for Aurora's line of PVC compounds. In a news release, Williams said that the addition of Aurora "aligns to our specialty growth strategy."
Streetsboro, Ohio-based Aurora is "a leading PVC compound producer that specializes in high-quality rigid, flexible and cellular foam PVC," he added. "This agreement emphasizes our commitment to bring a broader specialty mix of products to our customers from world-class producers."
Aurora, a unit of Chicago private equity firm Wind Point Partners, has made three acquisitions since mid-2017, most recently buying the assets of compounding firm JPI South of Pasadena, Texas, in May. Aurora makes compounds based on PVC and thermoplastic elastomers for a variety of markets.
In the filaments market, Nexeo has expanded its 3D printing portfolio with filaments specifically developed by Polymaker Industrial for industrial use. Shanghai-based Polymaker develops high-quality materials with enhanced strength and durability for industrial manufacturing, officials said.
Nexeo is now global distributor for three new types of Polymaker filaments. C515 is an advanced polycarbonate filament optimized for 3D printing providing superior printability combined with a low warping effect. Officials said the filament is ideal for industrial applications such as high-volume jigs and fixtures or sports equipment.
C515FR is a flame-retardant PC filament initially developed for the aerospace industry. It's suited for industrial applications such as drones and electronic housings, officials said. SU301 is a polyvinyl alcohol-based filament specifically developed as a support material for FFF printers. It's compatible with widely used 3D printing materials such as PLA, TPU, nylon and PETG. SU301 is also water-soluble and simplifies the post-printing process, officials said.
"Expanding our portfolio to include industrial-grade filaments from Polymaker Industrial gives our customers access to a wider range of filaments that solve new 3D printing challenges and meet the demands of manufacturers," Nexeo Europe/Middle East/Africa Vice President Paul Tayler said in a news release.
Polymaker Business Development Manager Wildrik van der Weiden added that his firm's industrial filaments "stand out because of their printability while also offering all the intrinsic material properties that engineers get with molding technology."
In a recent interview with Plastics News, Williams said that his firm's "whole value proposition is material solutions."
"We're focused on working side by side on product specifications with our customer so they can pick the right material for the right application," he added.
Nexeo is one of North America's largest distributors of plastics materials, distributing resins, compounds and concentrates for more than 20 suppliers.