United States-based nonwovens manufacturer Polymer Group Inc. (PGI) has announced plans to expand
and upgrade spunmelt operations in the United States and China with the installation of
state-of-the-art, custom-designed machinery in PGI manufacturing facilities in both countries. The
investment will enable the company to produce differentiated products that offer improved barrier
function, softness and opacity for downstream hygiene and healthcare products including diapers,
drapes and surgical gowns.
“This expansion in product capability and capacity is part of PGI’s ongoing strategy to
provide superior solutions to the marketplace and meet customers’ stated needs for higher
performing products with an optimum combination of barrier and comfort,” said Veronica “Ronee”
Hagen, CEO, PGI.
The company anticipates associated construction will begin early first-quarter 2010, with
commercial availability of product expected in mid-2011.
In related company news, PGI plans to open a research center of excellence (COE) at its
facility in Suzhou, China. The COE will focus on creating technologies to aid in the development of
differentiated nonwoven products.
The new COE will work with other PGI research and development (R&D) facilities outside of
China, as well as create working relationships with customers, suppliers, universities, research
companies and technology think tanks within Asia. In addition, the COE will support PGI’s expansion
plans in Asia and the United States.
“This newest regional Center of Excellence in China will be an extension of PGI’s ongoing
global R&D initiatives and continued investment in technology to deliver differentiated,
higher-performing products to the market,” said Mike Hale, COO, PGI. “Having dedicated research
centers and teams around the world fosters creativity, promotes collaboration and serves as a best
practice model for our company and customers.”