The investment will be on the double-digit million Euro scale and, according to company chairman Udo Ungeheuer, represents a further strengthening of the firm’s business after the glass ceramics competence centre that was recently established at the site.
Schott said that the decision to set up a new tube manufacturing base, rather than increase capacity at its existing facilities in Germany, Brazil, India and Spain, meets with customer demand that it ensures supply stability using multiple production sites.
The first of the new 10,000 tonnes capacity melt tanks being installed at Mainz is due to become operational in September next year, although Schott added that completion of the project depends on “future business developments” through to 2010.
When operational the tanks and associated batch warehousing and production space will be used to make Schott’s brand of Filox tubing products in 1.5 metre long Densopack bundles that will then be shipped to clients for further processing. At present, Filox tubes are widely used in the pharmaceutical manufacturing sector to make syringes, vials and sterile bottles.
Earlier this year, a Freedonia report predicted that growth of the vial and syringe sector, which currently generates revenues of around $9.6bn (€7.1bn) a year, would continue. They argued that demand in “pharmerging” markets, coupled with the new injection only biologics, would drive the expansion.