says June sales topped $25 million, its best month ever, and the company’s leadership predicts it will cross the $1 billion/yr threshold by 2011. The company, with its production base in the Salalah Free Zone in Oman and sales offices in Dallas, London, and Shanghai, has said before, as reported here, that it is aiming for global leadership in PET sheet extrusion, and also intends to become the largest supplier of PET based in the Middle East. The company’s sheet operations make use of a patented a technology it calls DPET (Direct-to-PET), in which melt from its PET reactors is fed straight into a sheet die, so that no heat history is added to the material, as would occur in an extrusion operation. Taking extrusion out of the processing equation makes for sheet with improved optical and mechanical properties, according to Octal, and trims about 65% off the amount of energy typically required for sheet extrusion—supposedly enabling thermoformers of the sheet to reduce their own processing temperatures.
Octal Chairman Saad Suhail Bahwan predicted total sales would reach $100 million per month by the middle of 2011 and said, “In two years we will be a $1-billion company. We are winning new customers while the competition cuts back or closes down and making steady progress in converting the market to PET.” June’s sales included 22,000 tonnes of PET resin and sheet sold to local, regional, and international customers. To date, the company exports about 66% of its products to Europe, 30% to North America, and the remainder to Middle East and Asian markets. The firm’s PET capacity now stands at 330,000 tonnes/yr, with this set to increase to 830,000 tonnes/yr following the completion of a second phase of expansion in 2011. —[email protected]