Material Difference Technologies LLC has acquired Houston-based plastics recycler Replas from LyondellBasell Industries.
No purchase price was disclosed in the deal between MDT, a recycler and resin distributor based in Sarasota, Fla., and global materials maker LBI. The transaction closed March 31.
In a July 20 news release, MDT officials said that Replas "is capable of producing a variety of custom formulations with consistent specifications that meet plastic processor requirements at a significant price advantage over prime resin."
Vice President Mark Stokes added in the release that Replas "is a great addition to our capabilities."
MDT "is very strong" in recycled resins and prime and generic prime resins, he said, while Replas "sits in between" prime resin and recycled material, which will allow MDT to make custom formulations to fit customers' product requirements.
In a July 22 phone interview, Stokes said that Replas mostly handles polypropylene materials. Although the firm doesn't do full recycling, it provides blending of recycled pellets. The site also will serve as a distribution center for both virgin and recycled resins.
"This gives us a manufacturing distribution facility to distribute products using recycled polypropylene," Stokes said. He added that MDT sells its recycled resins into "a broad array" of industrial and consumer products.
Replas will operate as MDT Replas. The business has rail access, large silo capacity, a quality control lab and a dedicated bulk truck fleet. The plant's silos allow for custom blends with targeted melt flow, officials said, while its wash/dry/blend operation provides clean material and minimizes environmental impact.
Replas traces its history to Evansville, Ind.-based Matrixx Group and plastics pioneer Ray Wright. In 2005, Matrixx was the first major acquisition made by Citadel Plastics, a private equity-funded business that made multiple acquisitions before being sold to Schulman in 2015.
LBI had acquired the Replas business as part of its purchase of A. Schulman Inc. in 2018. Earlier this year, LBI sold a former Schulman compounding plant in LaPorte, Texas, to Ingenia Polymers. LBI also has closed former Schulman plants in Houston and in Worcester, Mass., as well as Schulman's former headquarters in Fairlawn, Ohio, since completing that acquisition.