A company with ties to South Africa will build a $24.2 million plastic film recycling plant in Minnesota with some local help.
Myplas USA Inc. is teaming with MBOLD, a coalition of Minnesota companies, researchers and nonprofit groups, to establish the new location in Rogers, a suburb in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area.
Film manufacturer Charter Next Generation also will purchase resin recycled by Myplas USA to create new products.
"This has been a very unique project to put together and we've done it," Myplas USA CEO Andrew Pieterse said. "Now we're all very excited about turning spreadsheets into bricks and mortar."
And recycled plastic.
Pieterse is such a believer that he not only invested in the new project but also quit what he described as a good job with oil and gas company BP plc last fall to head up the effort.
"I frankly saw this vision and wanted to — felt like I had to — be part of this project and this change," he said. "When it feels right, it feels right. … October was a leap of faith and now it's reality."
But before Pieterse could get too excited about the project coming together, he said he had to remind himself that now is when the real work begins.
That includes renovating a 170,000-square-foot former distribution center, installing equipment and hiring employees with an expectation of beginning production next spring.
Myplas initially will install two lines to handle both high and low density polyethylene films — food grade for HDPE, nonfood grade of LDPE. The facility, once full, will have capacity of 90 million pounds and include six or seven lines.
For Charter Next Generation, the opportunity to be involved makes perfect sense, CEO Kathy Bolhous said.