With the opening of its 24th factory, the first in South America, Hempel will be better placed to serve the rapidly growing South American market. The new plant will mean shorter lead times for customers and will enable Hempel to develop and customize products to meet local environmental legislation and standards.
The new plant, located north of the Argentinian capital of Buenos Aires, will manufacture paint for the marine and protective coatings segments and will supply the entire South American market. The 3,000 square meter facility is part of the ‘One Hempel – One Ambition’ growth strategy, and is one of three new plants scheduled to open around the world in 2012 and 2013.
According to Lars Johansen, group vice president, Americas, the new plant is strategically located to best serve the market. “At the moment, we supply the South American market from our production facility in Singapore," he said. "The Buenos Aires plant will cut down lead times and streamline our supply chain. We’ll be better placed to serve existing and new customers in the region, as well as develop and customize products faster.”
Construction began on April 29, 2011, and the official opening was held on February 16, 2012. With a production volume of 10.5 million liters per year, the $17 million facility will employ 30 people by the end of 2012. The plant is designed for future capacity expansion and will supply the entire region with the complete portfolio of products within marine and protective segments.
The plant features the latest technology in paint production equipment, including conical dissolvers that enable very flexible production runs down to 20 to 30 percent of maximum capacity. To control the speed at which the powder is fed into the machine from the bags, a sonic system monitors the frequency generated from the dissolving process and adjusts the powder feed accordingly. To reduce emissions from the cleaning process, all the tanks are linked to a closed circuit cleaning system, which is sealed during the cleaning process.