2015 Nonwovens Sales: $117 million
Ekrem Kayali, chairman; C. Enver Kayali, president; Ayse Kayali, executive board member; Serkan Gogus, CEO; Murat G.Gökçe, general manager Durabey Istanbul plant, Darryl D.Fournier, president Mogul SC Nonwovens Corp; Ersin Kosker, director of projects and operations
Gaziantep, Turkey, Durabey-Istanbul, Turkey, Gray Court, SC
Spunbond, meltblown, spunlace, extrusion coated/laminated fabrics, Peva films, welded fabrics, converting
Bedding and furniture, medical, agriculture-landscape, luggage & shoe linings, filtration, oil sorbents/spill control, wipes, protective apparel, construction, hygiene, automotive, fabric softeners, laminating/coating substrates, packaging, vacuum cleaner dustbags
New plants in the U.S.—the company’s first foreign investment—and Turkey are among the recent headlines from Mogul Nonwovens. The Gaziantep, Turkey-based maker of spunbond, meltblown and spunlaced nonwovens reported a slight decline in sales for 2015 due to currency fluctuations and price reductions, mainly within its spunlace business.
“For sure our target is always to increase volume and turnover but there are factors beyond our control like exchange rates. So even though our sales reflect a decrease, there was not a sharp decrease with volume,” says CEO Serkan Gogus. “The reduction is due to pricing factors so we can’t say we are satisfied but we can’t complain too much.”
In August 2015, Mogul announced it would set up its first production outside of Turkey in Gray Court, SC. This $18 million investment will focus specifically on the production of spunlace nonwovens for medical, hygiene and wipes applications. The site’s 14,000-ton-per-year line is expected to start operation at the end of 2016 or early 2017.
“For parallel laid spunlace we mainly target wipes applications. We also see an increasing trend for hygiene applications while medical, automotive and coating substrates are some other applications,” Gogus says.
Mogul’s U.S. investment was precipitated by several reasons. “Since the beginning, the U.S. has always been among our major export markets and we have developed a good customer base and reputation in the marketplace. If you look at the global economy, you see uncertainty and problems in most parts of the world while the U.S. is sound and growing.”
The U.S. operation will be led by Darryl Fournier, a former executive with Suominen, Ahlstrom and Dexter, with the help of COO Beth Wolfe, Jonathan Layer, sales manager for the Americas Region, and Jerry Fan, business development director for Asia.
Back in Turkey, Mogul is in the process of installing two lines at a new site near Istanbul, Turkey. One of these lines is a crosslap line, which came onstream last month, while the other will offer a unique hybrid technology that produces fibrillated microfilament bico-hydroentangled spunbond nonwovens when it is complete this fall. Executives hope this hybrid microfilament line will open up new frontiers for nonwovens. The crosslap products will be sold under the Durell brand.
“As a player in spunlace area and a major player in technical applications we believe cross lap will be a good fit both to complement our wipes business and also open us up to new areas or applications with existing or new customers,” Gogus says. “The hybrid microfilament line is very unique and there are few of its kind in the world. We mainly target the apparel and upholstery segments, where nonwovens are not widely used so it will take time and efforts to establish such markets but we see it very challenging and exciting.”
New product development is also part of Mogul’s growth strategy. In April, the company launched a new product line comprising polyester-based thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) fabrics under the Elastex brand of nonwovens. These products are designed to provide maximum elongation and maximum elastic recovery while offering high air permeability and resistance to abrasion, puncture, aging and ultraviolet light. Application areas include medical, pharmaceutical, hygiene, healthcare, sportswear and food packaging, beverage filters, automobile interior components, cable wraps, films and many others.
Another new product from the company is meltblown polybutylene terephthalate (PBT) in its nonwovens portfolio. Mogul’s PBT based production comes as an addition to its existing polypropylene (PP) meltblown products and is intended to increase Mogul’s offerings to the liquid and gas filtration markets.
Mogul’s heavier weight PBT meltblown fabrics can be pleated thus creating opportunities in gas and liquid filtration where high efficiency filtration is required. This PBT product is also a potential replacement for micro-glass filtration media. It is available in SM and SMS versions.
Gogus notes: “We are impressed with the results of our initial production and believe we will bring even more value addition to PBT fabric applications by way of our product’s unique characteristics.”