Eastman Chemical Company announced plans Oct. 9 to further consolidate its manufacturing operations for products used in the ink and graphic arts markets. The company’s plants in LaVergne, TN and Rexdale, Canada, will be closed and production from these plants will be transferred to the company’s Pleasant Prairie, WI facility.
Consolidation of these operations, which are part of Eastman’s coatings, adhesives, specialty polymers and ink business, is expected to be completed in mid-2003. Eastman acquired the LaVergne, Rexdale and Pleasant Prairie sites as part of its acquisition of Lawter International Inc., in 1999. These sites are owned by Eastman Resins, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Eastman Chemical Company.
“These changes are a continuation of our efforts to consolidate manufacturing facilities in order to be a more efficient and cost-effective supplier to our customers,” said Brian Ferguson, Eastman’s chairman and CEO. “It is always a difficult decision to close a plant because of the impact on people and their jobs, but we believe this consolidation is necessary in order for Eastman to remain competitive in the inks and graphic arts markets in the future.”
Eastman’s LaVergne plant, which employs nine people, manufactures raw materials for the printing and graphic arts markets. The Rexdale plant employs six people and also provides products to the printing and graphic inks markets.