Wichita, Kansas - Fibres manufacturer Invista has proposed closing its Wilton, UK, site and has begun consultations at the plant, where it employs about 300 people. The group said the move was needed as a result of low demand caused by a shift in demand to Asia-Pacific, exacerbated by the current downturn and high infrastructure costs. Invista Performance Technologies and other activities at the Wilton Centre are not affected by this proposal, said Invista.
The group announced 13 Jan 2009 that Invista Textiles (UK) Ltd had begun talks with trade unions and employee representatives about the proposal to cease production at Wilton.
The main products manufactured at the Invista Intermediatespetrochemical complex at Wilton are HMD (hexamethylene diamine), nylonsalt, nylon 6,6 polymer, and adipic acid. Wilton also producesdiaminocyclohexane, bishexamethylenetriamine, and theprecursor for dibasic esters -- products with uses in clothing,carpeting, polyurethanes, coatings and adhesives.
"Shifts in demand for nylon intermediates and polymer to Asia and other regions of the world have resulted in overcapacity in the European market causing significant challenges for Invista's Wilton facility," Invista noted in its announcement. Added to this is the effect of the current downturn on housing, automotive, textiles and other key markets, which has caused "steep and rapid decline in demand for the products produced at the site," Invista added.
Together with high infrastructure costs, these factors "have compromised the Wilton site's ability to be globally competitive going forward," the company concluded.
"We have come to the difficult decision that these proposals are necessary after a thorough evaluation of the site's current and potential future viability," said Warren Primeaux, president of Invista Intermediates, in the announcement
"We will be discussing this proposal in more detail with employee representatives and unions and will make every effort to keep our employees informed of further developments during the consultation process" added Raul Trochez, Wilton site manager.
Invista claims to be one of the world's largest integrated producers of polymers and fibres, primarily for nylon, spandex (polyurethane) and polyester applications.