Plastics packaging manufacturer Versa Pak Ltd. is investing $15 million into its Celina, Ohio, site, where it will build a $3 million, 56,000-square-foot facility; invest $12 million into four more production lines; and add 66 jobs when fully operational.
Founded in 1986, the privately held company serves the food and consumer industries with various types of monolayer and coextruded polyethylene bags, rolls, sheeting, tubing and shrink bundling film.
With annual sales of $43 million, Versa Pak ranks 97th among North American film and sheet producers, according to Plastics News' latest ranking.
The company saw record sales in 2020 and needs more capacity to grow with existing customers as well as take on new ones. Last year, Versa Pak processed some 43 million pounds of material into packaging with different kinds of layers, moisture barriers and puncture resistance.
Business is on track to exceed that.
"This year we will hit about 50 million pounds and we will be adding over 20 million pounds of capacity," Versa Pak President Michael Brunswick said in a phone interview.
When the expansion is completed in September, the company will have another 56,000 square feet of space and a total of 30 production lines. New employees will be brought on in phases, starting with 18.
"Once the expansion is full, it will be 66," Brunswick said.
The new machinery will increase capabilities for five-layer packaging.
Versa Pak is certified to meet Safe Quality Food (SQF) Institute requirements for manufacturing flexible film food packaging, but that's not the only market driving growth. Sales have been climbing steadily across the board, leading to seven expansions in the last decade.
"I can't narrow it down to a single market," Brunswick said. "We get into everything. With our SQF certification, we have gotten more into secondary pharmaceutical, 40- to 48-inch master rolls, mailer films, converter-grade film, and of course the food industry continues to grow."
The latest expansion is eligible for a $125,000 grant from the Ohio Rail Development Commission, which will help cover improvements to the on-site rail infrastructure.
"This expansion is part of our growth strategy of being able to reach out to new customers," Brunswick said in a notice to distributors on the company website.
Come fall, Versa Pak will be positioned with about 140,000 square feet of manufacturing space and 60,000 square feet of warehousing.