Fornoni notes that the plant, located in Simpsonville, SC, was designed with room for expansion. The company is working on additional products to offer to the U.S. market, and one possibility is to make a different kind of topsheet produced with a nonwoven fabric, which will be made at the site, possibly using an air through bond technology. If built, it would be the plant’s first nonwovens line.
Fornoni adds the possibility of further expansion is coming along more quickly than originally expected due to opportunities perceived in the U.S. market. Once Pantex perceives a customer need, Fornoni says, “We make decisions very quickly.”
The initial phase of the U.S. project installed 150 million square meters of topsheet capacity and this could potentially reach 500 million square meters once the investment plan, which includes elastic laminates for adult and baby diaper closure systems, is complete. Pantex also has operations in Italy and the UAE where it makes nonwovens, films, lamination, perforation and elastic laminates for fastening systems.