Röchling invests in the USA

The Röchling Group is continuing its dynamic growth course in the North American market with the opening of a new production site for thermoplastic materials in Gastonia, North Carolina, on October 17, 2008.

The entire production of thermoplastic semi-finished products for Röchling Sustaplast, the sheet extrusion for Röchling Engineered Plastics as well as the inventory and the entire administration have all relocated to the new production facility, which occupies 165,000 sq. ft. (approximately 15,330 sq. m.). The move has made room for further expansion of the hardboard capacity at the original site. The new marketing company Röchling Engineering Plastics will take over the marketing of the REP and Sustaplast products.

Lewis H. Carter, member of the Röchling Management Board and responsible for activities in the USA, sees in the merger a strong advantage for the customers as well: “The consolidation enables a new marketing and sales concept that will greatly enhance Röchling’s position in the US plastics market. "One-stop shopping" is the new catch phrase: all of Röchling’s products available at one location. With this concept, Röchling Engineering Plastics will take the lead in the market.”

At the opening ceremony, Ludger Bartels, member of the Executive Board of the Röchling Group and CEO of the entire High-Performance Plastics division, showed his enthusiasm for the investment totaling USD 5.2 million: “Despite the current economic and financial crisis, we view North America, in particular the United States, as a future market. At the very least, we expect high demand for our innovative and high-quality plastic products because of the necessary investments in the entire infrastructure sector. America is and remains a growth market for Röchling.”

Six Production Locations in America

With the start of operations at the new plant, Röchling has laid the foundation for further growth. Röchling now has six production locations on the North American continent. In the spring of 2007, Röchling acquired the renowned composite materials manufacturer Glastic Inc., in Cleveland, OH, and the thermoplastics manufacturer Symplastics Ltd., in Orangeville, Ontario, and successfully integrated both of them into the Group. In addition to the production of semi-finished products, at the Röchling Machined Plastics in Mount Pleasant, PA, Röchling can efficiently process thermoplastic and composite materials on modern CNC-milling machines to produce finished components to customer specifications. Röchling Leripa Papertech in Kimberly, WI, specializes in consumable parts for paper machines.REP USA manufactures thermoplastic semi-finished products, extruded and pressed sheets, sectional parts, rods, pipes and welding rods for industries such as the mining, chemical and food industries, as well as for medical technology. Röchling Sustaplast specializes in high-performance and high-temperature plastics. In 2007, Röchling generated EUR 125 million in sales in the USA.

Mannheim, Germany, October 17, 2008

Company Profile:

The Röchling Group, a worldwide operating plastics group with over 6,000 employees at 54 locations in 18 countries, stands for proficiency in plastics. Its two divisions, High-Performance Plastics and Automotive Plastics, concentrate on processing quality plastics into semi-finished products, components, and systems for a wide range of industrial uses.

Röchling stands for innovative products and state-of-the-art process technology in engineering plastics.The High-Performance Plastic division’s product range extends from semi-finished products such as sheets, rods, and hollow and flat steel bars via sectional and cast parts to mechanically finished assembly units.

The Automotive Plastics division makes plastic parts for the automotive industry. They consist of technologically sophisticated products made of polymer materials and natural fiber plastic composites for the engine compartment, the underbody, and the interior.