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S&E Specialty Polymers rebounding from a near fatal crisis

March 18/2011

(Plastics Today) -- S&E Specialty Polymers of Lunenburg, MA, is rebounding from a near fatal crisis through application of a technical focus and investments in more efficient processing equipment. At the end of 2004, S&E Acquisition bought the assets of compounder Gitto Global Corp. in U.S. Bankruptcy Court after officers of Gitto allegedly participated in financial fraud. "We lost $6 million in the first six months because people had such a sour taste for the previous administration," says Duane Shooltz, who became chief operating officer of S&E Specialty Polymers in 2008 after serving as a divisional president for Smith PLC, a large multinational company.

Sales have been rising 25% annually since 2009, but two-thirds of the plant's capacity of 65 million pounds annually remains unused.

Technical officers at the company say they are starting to score some big hits, however, with proprietary new compounds.

A highly filled polyolefin-based compound called TufFill is being used in a new Chrysler Jeep grille. The compound is designed for high flexural modulus and great impact resistance in injection molded parts for automotive, battery, and electronics applications.

Last year, the company expanded its research and development department with a 28mm twin-screw extruder from Steer America. This year, a new gravimetric system from K-Tron will be installed on two of its six extrusion lines.

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