Against a backdrop of earth-moving equipment and stacks of steel, MonoSol, a division of Kuraray Group, broke ground for its new plant in Lebanon, Indiana, on Sept. 12.
The new $72 million, 150,000-square-foot production facility is MonoSol’s sixth manufacturing plant and its fourth in Indiana. The company makes water-soluble films for single-unit-dose laundry and dishwasher detergents, personal care, food ingredients and agriculture products, as well as films that are used to improve manufacturing processes. MonoSol films are made of polyvinyl alcohol (PVOH), a biodegradable, non-toxic film that dissolves in water.
Construction on the site, located in the Duke Realty Lebanon Business Park, began early this spring. When the facility is completed in late 2020, the company expects to employ up to 90 workers there. Founded in Indiana in 1953, MonoSol currently employs nearly 600 workers at its Merrillville headquarters and three plants in Northwest Indiana. The company additionally manufactures its water-soluble films in the U.K. and Japan.
Company leaders and employees were joined by local and state officials to celebrate the groundbreaking. MonoSol President and Kuraray Executive Officer P. Scott Bening said the project is designed to enhance the company’s proximity to its growing global customer base and provide a degree of geographic diversity.
“MonoSol serves many of the largest consumer products companies in the world,” Bening said. “Building this new facility in Lebanon positions our company to continue growing alongside of them, while also proving that world-class companies can be born and grow right here in Indiana.”
Lebanon Mayor Matt Gentry said MonoSol’s commitment is one of the largest in a string of new investments planned for the city in recent months.
“MonoSol was recently recognized amongst the nation’s best and brightest companies to work for, and I am pleased that they have chosen to locate their first central Indiana facility in Lebanon,” he said. “We look forward to seeing them thrive in our community.”
Company and local officials also participated in a traditional Japanese “Daruma” good luck ceremony. A Daruma doll is one of the most popular lucky charms in Japan and helps fulfill wishes. At the beginning of an important project, leaders paint one eye of the doll. Upon project completion, the other eye is painted in celebration of wishes being fulfilled.
Construction at the site is being led by The Ross Group, Inc. with facility design by Virtue Architects. Cushman & Wakefield supported site selection and acquisition.