Primex Plastics Corp. will have more ability to develop new materials through a recently announced expansion.
Richmond, Ind.-based Primex will spend $5.4 million to expand its color concentrates plant in Jasper, Tenn. In a message to Plastics News, business unit director Doug Borgsdorf said that the expansion will include new office space for research and development staff and new space for R&D equipment, including injection molding, sheet extrusion and compounding capabilities.
"We need a space where we can work in conjunction with our customers to develop new materials," Borgsdorf said.
The expansion is expected to create 28 new jobs. Borgsdorf said that development work made possible by the expansion will have "a strong focus" on sustainable product offerings, but also "will remain true" to Primex's core product offerings of thermoplastic elastomers, thermoplastic olefins and a new line of thermoplastic vulcanizates.
He added Primex has received grant funding that will allow the firm to train current staff on new technologies and to hire multiple new R&D positions, as well as several support staff.
For Primex, Tennessee "had so much to offer — great community, great local government and we already had a very solid base of great people to build upon," Borgsdorf said. "The foundation was there for us to build for the next 50 years."
Jasper's product mix includes custom color concentrates for commercial, medical or food-grade applications. The expansion project will employ almost 130 during construction.
Primex is also a major sheet extruder. The firm was 18th in PN's most recent ranking of North American film and sheet makers, with estimated 2021 sales of $600 million.