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Conair finalizes large order with Balcas at NPE

Conair secured an order worth $250,000 during NPE's first day, signing off on plans to work with wood products supplier Balcas, which is ramping up a production site in Kildare, Ireland for a polymer-coated medium density fiberboard (MDF) product. In February, Balcas signed an agreement with Eastman Chemical Co. to supply coated molded and trim products into Europe using Eastman's Cerfis technology.

Conair secured an order worth $250,000 during NPE's first day, signing off on plans to work with wood products supplier Balcas, which is ramping up a production site in Kildare, Ireland for a polymer-coated medium density fiberboard (MDF) product. In February, Balcas signed an agreement with Eastman Chemical Co. to supply coated molded and trim products into Europe using Eastman's Cerfis technology.

Conair NPE2012
Balcas' Peter Burton (left) shakes hands with Conair's Ernie Preiato at Conair's booth on Monday, April 2 at NPE2012 after finalizing a $250,000 order for auxiliary and extrusion equipment.
Peter Burton, Balcas' production director, told PlasticsToday that his company is hoping to begin production in the fourth quarter. Ernie Preiato, VP extrusion at Conair, said the agreement includes drying hoppers, vacuum pumps, dust collectors, receivers, a control system, and a novel downstream piece of equipment designed for this particular process called an extrusion pusher, essentially pushing profiles through versus the more traditional puller hauloff.

Chris Keller, president of the Conair Group and its parent IPEG Inc., noted that Conair was enthused about the order not only for the revenue but the end market it was derived from. "Conair is very excited about the project," Keller said, "but we're doubly excited to see anything positive happening in the building and construction industry."

Now hiring

Conair's NPE booth at 11,000 sq ft, is the company's largest ever, outstripping the 2009 space of 8500 sq ft, according to Larry Doyle, VP global sales and marketing at Conair, who said he was "thrilled" with the first day's activity. Doyle said the company has seen strong growth through the first quarter of 2012 in all regions and markets, prompting a series of new hires including two new product managers, a regional manager, a marketing hire, and numerous engineers, with the hopes of bringing on more help. To assist there the company posted a "we're hiring now" sign on its booth.

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