Archive for April, 2007

Simona: Double digit sales growth

Friday, April 27th, 2007

Simona Group, headquarted in Kirn, Germany, has continued double digit growth, with sales rising 14% in 2006 to €262.8m. The manufacturer of plastic sheet, pipe and rod had growth rates of 22.4% in 2005 and 8.4% in 2004.

Exports were again the driving force behind the growth, Simona pointed out. Sales in Germany grew by 12.5% to €97.5m, despite the results including a contribution from the acquisition of Deutsche Holzveredelung Alfons & Ewald Schmeing. The company said however that domestic demand in Germany has started to revive, for the first time since 2000.

Earnings (EBIT), at €14.9m, have not kept pace. The company’s 5.7% return of EBIT against turnover was below Simona’s 7% target, up from 5.4% in 2005, but below the 6.8% achieved in 2004. This has been mainly on account of a rise of more than 19% in raw material costs, as well as higher staff costs and significant increases in the cost of energy and freight.

Against a background of strong competition, Simona said that it has not been able to fully pass these costs on to its customers.

Looking ahead, the company is optimistic about being able to stabilise EBIT in 2007 to the level of 2006. It said that this should be achieved through “measures to increase the company’s efficiency, with simultaneous cost optimisation”.

Seksui Acquires Allen Extruders

Monday, April 23rd, 2007

Sekisui America Corporation announced its acquisition of Allen Extruders, USA. Founded in 1970, Allen Extruders was among North America’s largest privately owned manufacturers of extruded thermoplastic sheet used in the thermoforming industry. The company’s proprietary products include the Alextra™ line of high-gloss, durable thermoplastic sheet. Sekisui America is the parent company of Kleerdex Company, LLC, manufacturer of KYDEX® thermoplastic sheet. Allen Extruders and Kleerdex Company will operate independently.
‘This acquisition enables Allen Extruders and Kleerdex to combine their expertise, technology, and other resources to generate original products and solutions,’ said Jim Medalie, president of Kleerdex Company. Medalie will be responsible for the newly acquired company. ‘We will invest in both companies over the next few years to make sure they have the necessary tools to grow while providing the best customer service in the industry.’
Mike Angell, part of Allen’s management team, was named general manager and will be based in Michigan. The rest of Allen Extruders’ management team will remain in place, with the exception of Sam Angell, who is retiring.
‘As a second-generation, family-run company, our legacy is important to us. It was important for us to find the right partner to lead us into the 21st century. We believe we found such a partner with Sekisui and Kleerdex, who will help us continue to grow and prosper for many years to come,’ said Mike Angell.
‘We are committed to making sure that this acquisition is as seamless as possible to our customers,’ said Jim Lynn, incoming executive vice president at Allen. ‘Allen Extruders has a strong reputation of treating customers right, and we want to assure them that the level of commitment and service will not change.’

Battenfeld: Extrusion line from China for the world market

Monday, April 23rd, 2007

Battenfeld Extrusionstechnik GmbH, Bad Oeynhausen, Germany further ex-tended its wide range of machinery in the middle of last year by introducing techBEX, the standardized turnkey line for small profiles. More than 30 techBEX lines were already sold within the first six months, some of which have gone to new European and Asian customers.
Complete line competence for the pipe, profile, film and sheet industries is a special strength of the Bad Oeynhausen machine manufacturer. With all components per-fectly matched, the extrusion line specialist offers its customers cost-efficient equipment with a high degree of reliability, high product quality standards and minimal downtime and reject rates. Two universal compact lines for the profile industry have already been successful on the market for some time, i.e. the miniBEX for small technical profiles and the winBEX for window main profiles. This range has now been extended by the low-cost techBEX standard line. It is manufactured and assembled completely in China and distributed world-wide. It costs about 30% less than conventional lines, yet its technology is on a high level. techBEX lines are avail-able either with the BCE 1-45-25 D single-screw extruder for an output of 40 kg/h or with the BCE 1-60-25 D extruder for a performance of about 60 kg/h. The down-stream equipment package includes a calibrating table, a belt haul-off, a flying knife cutter, a servo saw and a tip table.

With Battenfeld Extrusion Systems Ltd. in the Chinese city of Shunde, where tech-BEX is manufactured, American Maplan Corp., McPherson, USA and Battenfeld Ex-trusionstechnik, companies of the Battenfeld extrusion sector are present on three continents, marketing the universally standardized extrusion lines globally and providing local customer support worldwide. Wolfgang Studener, President and CEO of Battenfeld Extrusionstechnik GmbH, is pleased with the success of the new line: ‘With techBEX, we have further extended our machinery range and are now in a position to offer solutions to suit a broad customer base, from basic standard lines to high-end extrusion lines that are still being manufactured here in Germany.’

Nordenia to sell plant in Netherlands

Friday, April 20th, 2007

A group of investors are set to take over Nordenia International’s flexible packaging plant in Putten, Netherlands, for an undisclosed amount.
The films and packaging group had originally planned to close Nordenia Holland in September this year. Now it will continue as a production site under new owners.
A letter of intent for the takeover has been signed with a group of investors led by Jos van der Vorst, who are also the owners of film converter Burgers, based in Apeldoorn, Netherlands. Completion of the deal is expected in the current quarter.
The Putten plant produces packaging for the food industry and films for the tyre and aviation industries. Nordenia said these business lines will continue, but products for the pet food industry will no longer be made at Putten.
Nordenia will retain the pet food packaging business, which is a growing area for the company.

AMI: Investment slows in global BOPP film industry

Friday, April 20th, 2007

The biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP) film industry is set for a period of readjustment, as earlier high rates of investment in capacity have now slowed down, said AMI.The research group said over-enthusiastic investment in new BOPP capacity in the first part of this decade has driven down margins and utilisation rates around the world. But utilisation rates should steadily improve over the next five years, which could bring relief to BOPP industry margins. Demand for BOPP film globally reached nearly 4.5 million tonnes in 2006. Asia represents the largest regional market, accounting for 40% of global demand in 2006.
Western Europe accounted for 18% of global demand and the North American Free Trade Area 13% in 2006. Utilisation levels in these regions have mainly been supported by export markets. Growth for Western Europe, NAFTA and Japan is forecast by AMI at an average of just under 2% per year over the next five years, compared with nearer 9% per year for the rest of the world. AMI said there have been substantial increases in BOPP film use in the Indian sub-continent, the Middle East and Russia. Russia and Eastern Europe accounted for 6% of worldwide demand in 2006.
There has been increased investment in new lines in these regions, with Russia, for example, seeing five new BOPP film plants coming on stream in the 2005-2007 period. AMI said there have been substantial increases in BOPP film use in the Indian sub-continent, the Middle East and Russia. Russia and Eastern Europe accounted for 6% of worldwide demand in 2006. There has been increased investment in new lines in these regions, with Russia, for example, seeing five new BOPP film plants coming on stream in the 2005-2007 period.

Chinaplas 2007: Largest Scale held with Spectacular Concurrent Activities

Thursday, April 19th, 2007

Asia’s No. 1 plastics and rubber trade fair, the 21st International Exhibition on Plastics and Rubber Industries, Chinaplas 2007 will be held very soon from May 21-24, 2007 at the largest exhibition and conventional centre in Asia - Chinese Export Commodities Fair Pazhou Complex, Guangzhou, P.R. China.

Chinaplas 2007 attracts over 1,600 exhibitors coming from 30 countries and regions, occupying an exhibition area of 102,000sqm and displaying 1,200 machineries and equipment. Large pool of trade visitors coming from over 100 countries and regions have already pre-registered to attend this mega show. Among them, over 50% are from overseas including Europe, Asia, Southeast Asia, Middle East, South Africa, United States, etc. Meanwhile, trade associations from Vietnam, Malaysia, United States, France, India, Turkey, Pakistan, Philippines, Ireland, Thailand, Indonesia, Venezuela, etc. will organize delegation groups to the show. The organizer, Adsale Exhibition Services Ltd, expects that the number of visitors will reach a high level of 60,000.
Concurrent Events
With the aims of raising the overall quality of the fair and promoting corporate’s social responsibility, a series of onsite activities will be concurrently held during Chinaplas 2007.
China-India Plastics Industry Summit 2007
Topic: Technology Transfer - Opportunities & Challenges
China Plastics Processing Industry Association (CPPIA)
Plastindia Foundation (PIF)
Adsale Exhibition Services Ltd (AES)
China Plastic Machinery Industry Association (CPMIA)
Guangdong Plastics Industry Association (GPIA)
Date: 20 May 2007
Venue: Zhujian Hotel (2 Si You Yi Road, Guangzhou, PR China)
1. Plastics industry in China & India: present market situation & analysis, trade development potentials, future trends & investment opportunities
2. Challenges and problems faced in the development of plastics industry in China & India
3. Critical success factors in setting up joint ventures & strategic alliances
4. Case studies: Experience sharing on how to open up Chinese & Indian markets by representative companies in each country
CEO Forum
Date: May 22-23, 2007
Time: 10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Venue: Forum Stage in Hall 2C, 2/F, Chinese Export Commodities Fair Pazhou Complex
Details: As a key decision maker of an enterprise, CEO presides over many crisis issues and strategic development for the enterprise, striking to build up a prestigious brand internationally. What are the elements that a successful CEO should possess in terms of brand building, crisis management or strategic leadership? CEO Forum will invite various well-known CEOs from the plastics and rubber industries to share their profound knowledge and experiences with audience.
Charity Bazaar
Date: May 21-24, 2007
Venue: Exhibition Hall 2C & Hall 1D
Details: A Charity Bazaar will be organized to raise fund for The Red Cross Society of China RCSC to help the communities in poverty. It is our hope to let more people in China to share the fruitful results of the developments in the plastics and rubber industries. Let us pass on our caring message and contribute our part to constructing a harmonious community in China! Come! And make a purchase in the charity bazaar!
Stamp for Fun
Date: May 21-24, 2007
Venue: Booth 1M101, 1J149, 2E451, 2C261
Details: Join our game ‘Stamp for Fun’! Visitors can redeem a special free gift in limited edition. You will also participate in the Lucky Draw and have chance to win the latest electronic product!
A Press Conference (April 19) in Dongguan to Announce No. 1 Records
Chinaplas 2007 has grown rapidly and achieved numerous No.1 records. They include :
1. The plastics and rubber event with the longest history since inception in 1983
2. Supported by organizer of K-Fair and exclusively sponsored by EUROMAP in China for consecutive 18 editions
3. The sole plastics and rubber event in China with the honor of ‘UFI Approved Event’
4. Exhibition area hits 102,000sqm
5. 1,600 exhibitors with 65% from overseas
6. 60,000 visitors with 15% from overseas
7. Showcases 1,200 machines and equipment at the fairground

On April 19, 2007, a press conference will be held in Dongguan, PR China to announce these outstanding results. It is expected that there will be a participation of many attendees from media, associations and end-users enterprises of different industries in South China.
Strong Supporting Team
Chinaplas 2007 is the 18th consecutive edition to earn EUROMAP (European Committee of Machinery Manufacturers for the Plastics & Rubber Industries) as the exclusive sponsor in China. It is organized by Adsale Exhibition Services Ltd., co-organized by China Foreign Trade Centre (Group), China National Light Industry Council - China Plastics Processing Industry Association, China Plastic Machinery Industry Association, Guangdong Plastics Industry Association and Messe Duesseldorf China Ltd. The fair is also well-supported by enormous overseas and Chinese trade associations in the plastics and rubber industries.
Visitor Online Pre-registration Enjoy Special Privileges
Visitors who pre-register online now at will enjoy free admission (originally cost RMB20), a copy of show catalogue (valued RMB30) containing over 1,600 suppliers’ contacts and a souvenir in limited edition.

Continental: Acquisition of 51 Percent of Matador Rubber Group

Thursday, April 19th, 2007

Continental AG, Hanover, is set to acquire a 51 percent stake in the rubber and conveyor belt business of Matador Group, Puchov, Slovakia, subject to the ap-proval of antitrust authorities. ‘With this move we are strengthening our ties to our highly successful joint venture partner. At the same time we are expanding our operational base in Eastern Europe markets as well as our production capacities for PLT in low-cost countries,’ said Continental’s Executive Board chairman Manfred Wennemer on April 11 in Hanover. Continental (76 percent) and Matador (24 percent) have been aligned in a joint venture for the production of truck tires in Puchov since 1998. The two parties agreed not to disclose the details of the agreement, including the financial volume.
In 2006 Matador Group had 4,770 employees and posted sales of approx. €450 million.’With this strategic alliance we will further improve the quality and volume of Matador tire production, open new markets and increase the value of the Matador brand. After excellent experiences with our truck tire joint venture, we are sure that this partnership will be the best solution for the future of Matador and also for our employees. We are, moreover, also strengthening our position in Automotive - our second strategic business,’ said Štefan Rosina, CEO of the Matador Group.
“In combining forces and experience, we will improve our market positions in Central and Eastern Europe and get additional sales opportunities in Russia, Ukraine and the Stan States. Especially our position in Russia will be expanded, as we are not only improving our access to the market but getting a production facility in Omsk as well,’ Wennemer empha-sized.’Operationally we intend to integrate Matador into our brand portfolio and invest in expanding annual production capacities for PLT from 5.5 to more than 7 million. This gives us a highly efficient tool to be used against low-cost competition,’ Wennemer added. The Matador ma-chinery factory in Puchov will be integrated into the machinery factory in Hanover-Stöcken as a second pillar. On top of that, Continental gets additional capacities for research and devel-opment.
The ContiTech Conveyor Belt Group also stands to benefit from the acquisition. ‘Adding Matador’s business to ours makes sense strategically,’ said Gerhard Lerch, member of Con-tinental’s Executive Board and responsible for the ContiTech division.’The company is very well-positioned in the Eastern Europe.’ With a workforce of 160, Matador manufactures a wide range of textile belts in Slovakia. The ContiTech Conveyor Belt Group has eight loca-tions in Chile, China, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, and Mexico. With its approximately 2,700 employees, it posted sales of €379 million in 2006.

Cincinnati Milacron: New “Plug and Play” Extrusion System at Chinaplas 2007 Trade Show

Tuesday, April 17th, 2007

Herb Hutchison, Director of International Business Development at Cincinnati Milacron Extrusion Systems, announced the introduction of a new ‘Plug and Play ‘ extrusion system that will be introduced at Chinaplas May 21-24, 2007, in Guangzhou, China. The new extrusion system will offer wood and fiber composite extrusion processors a complete turnkey approach enabling quick market entry and rapid on-line production with Cincinnati Milacron’s proven extrusion technology. ‘This system has all the elements required to get up and running at a very affordable price, states Hutchison. The key to the system is the industry leading Cincinnati Milacron Extrusion Systems workhorse TC86 that uses advanced large conical twin- screw technology to bring unique compression and low shear-mixing capability to an unmatched material processing range. The TC86 is an excellent machine for use with wood fiber /plastic composites with up to 70% fiber loading along with high output, offering homogenous melts from various blends of natural and synthetic fibers, heat/shear-sensitive thermoplastics, recycled plastics, coupling and nucleating agents, pigments and other materials.

MOSAIC Control is Standard
The TC86 extruder comes standard with the Cincinnati Milacron MOSAIC touch screen control system. Featuring extreme reliability and precision and a 15′ (381 mm) LCD screen. The MOSAIC has self-diagnostics and Ethernet TCP/IP connectivity. Proprietary Cincinnati Milacron Extrusion Systems software provides full production control, includes SPC monitoring and analysis, process alarms, slaved co-extruder speed control and process ‘recipe’ storage with call up capability. Operators use on-screen control panels with instant-access information screens including full color graphics and multi-language capability.
Strong Heritage in Extrusion Technologies
Cincinnati Milacron Extrusion Systems originated the large conical twin-screw extruders and today is recognized as a global leader in extrusion technology. The TC86 is the new system manufactured in the USA by Milacron. The TC86 large diameter screws (176 mm tapering to 86 mm with a 27:1 LD ratio) optimizes the feed zone surface area for fast, uniform heat transmission from the screw to the material. The tapered screw design allows a larger feed zone for ‘fluffy’ light bulk density materials and applies a natural compression during processing which results in wood flour being ‘wetted out’ and plastic polymers being properly mixed prior to devolatilization. The deep flights of the advanced screw technology optimize mixing while reducing shear forces. High torque at low speeds enables gentle low shear melting and mixing and offers ultra efficient plasticizing in vinyl extrusion. The TC86 features a small exit diameter which reduces rotational shear and screw thrust, while increasing pumping efficiency into the die. The conical twin screw action generates positive pumping pressure for quality extrusion of viscous rigid PVC and WPC material which is also critical for higher head pressures that are required for engineered profiles with thinner walls and small die openings.
New Plug & Play System features the TC 86
‘The system that Cincinnati Milacron Extrusion Systems is offering has all that you need to quickly get into the WPC business and generate revenue. The ideal solution for a quick start up is using non-complicated but proven technology, affordable and very effective. It’s a very practical American approach that works! This system has all the performance and options of a big heavily engineered system including the traditional material handling equipment, transfer equipment, mixing, drying, delivery system, die set and all the downstream cooling and cutting equipment. The workhorse, TC86 from Cincinnati Milacron comes with the system. The ‘Plug and Play’ system avoids costly ‘add-ons’ and complicated custom controls that are loaded into many Euro extrusion systems. All that is missing is the material formulation, the material and the finished parts’ states Hutchison.
The new system is supported by Cincinnati Milacron Extrusion Systems on a worldwide basis and includes support from Milacron’s extensive network of Extrusion technology systems partners.
Extensive WPC Material Preparation/Handling System Features
Other benefits of the ‘Plug & Play’ System cited by Hutchison are:
• Significant reduction of capital outlay as compared to larger complex extrusion systems.
• Provides a system capable of producing 1-2 metric tons of material an hour.
• Quicker delivery than more complex systems offering the capability for a quick set up and start of actual production.
• A system with excellent production capabilities for under $750,000 (USD), while larger systems can have significant delivery issues and run from $2.0 M to $2.5 M (USD) in costs.
• Offers a simplified, easy to operate control system.
• Can be set up with a single or multiple extrusion lines and has the capability to be scaled larger at a later date once sales increase for the processor.
• Lower maintenance costs due to the simplified system design.
• Extreme manufacturing flexibility. Larger, more complex systems can mean total plant shut downs when manufacturing issues develop. ‘Plug & Play’ enables quick resolution and quick restart.
Full Range of Twin Screw Extruders
Cincinnati Milacron Extrusion Systems offers a comprehensive range of conical twin-screw extruders meeting every requirement from lab/development work to precision profiles and high-output shape production. Models are available with 35mm, 50mm, 55mm, 65mm, 80mm, 92mm and 96mm conical screws. Recognized as the global leader in Wood Plastics Composite (WPC) shapes for decking rails and other products, Cincinnati Milacron Extrusion Systems bring superior versatility, melt homogeneity and process control to the ever-emerging applications for WPC profiles and structural components.
Leading extrusion industry processors know that ‘if the extruder is not made in Cincinnati, Ohio then it’s not a Cincinnati Milacron Extruder’.
First incorporated in 1884, Milacron is a leading global supplier of plastics processing technologies and industrial fluids, with manufacturing facilities in North America, Europe, India and Asia.

PALRAM: Development of PVC Panels with Built-In Wide Spectrum Pathogen Killer

Tuesday, April 17th, 2007

Increased emphasis is being placed today on preventing the spread of various infections. One way to do this is to cover surfaces with microbe-resistant materials in food production facilities, hospitals (walls and ventilation ducts), clean rooms, etc. that can be repeatedly cleaned and sanitized. A new breakthrough from PALRAM not only does that, but also actively kills dangerous pathogens, thus creating new conditions to accomplish this.

An intensive research effort by PALRAM’s Technology Department has produced a new PVC cladding that offers new and unsurpassed sanitary protection. PALRAM’s patent pending Hygienic products feature antimicrobial protection that facilitates excellent hygiene for a wide spectrum of applications. In addition to standard PVC’s proven sanitary benefits (such as high chemical resistance), independent lab tests confirm that Hygienic products effectively eliminate harmful microorganisms in less than 24 hours.
PALRAM’s Hygienic cladding is now available in flat and corrugated sheets for use in a wide variety of applications requiring Active Hygiene technology. Having an FDA approved pathogens-killing ingredient, Hygienic products are also suitable for various applications requiring this special classification.

Flat PALRAM PVC HYG Sheet can also be thermoformed and fabricated into items intended for use in food production facilities, hospitals, clean rooms, etc.

Krauss-Maffei: Investment in the Changeover to Synchronized Flow Assembly

Monday, April 16th, 2007

Krauss Maffei Kunststofftechnik GmbH is now manufacturing twin-screw extruders from KMD 75 to KMD 114 and single-screw extruders from KME 45 to KME 90 on a synchronized flow basis. Last year, the company successfully switched assembly of its CX and MX injection moulding machines to the new ‘pulled’ system. The Extrusion Technology division has now followed suit, with all electrical and mechanical sub-assemblies being produced on this basis. Single- and twin-screw extruders are now assembled in four synchronized stages. Commissioning the machines is not part of the system.
During the latter part of 2006, as part of the preparations for optimal implementation of the new system, the Extrusion Technology production floors were completely renovated and a new layout and logistics concept was put in place. Logistics are now fully synchronized with and ‘pulled’ by the requirements of the assembly line.
‘We are fully aware that it is not only our products that must be continuously improved, but also our processes,’ comments Josef Martl, Krauss-Maffei CEO. ‘It is the only route to ensure that Krauss-Maffei remains strongly competitive in the long term, that we slim down our processes, increase the value added within our organization and improve the quality of our products. This is all to the benefit of our customers.’