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Bradken Starting 18-Month Expansion at Amite

Feb. 10, 2011
$18.1-million capital program centers on more mold/coremaking capacity, better product flow New molding machinery, cranes, furnaces +171 workers "… an investment and commitment"

Bradken Inc. is expanding its steel foundry at Amite, LA, with an estimated $18.1-mllion capital investment program. The plan is to add a 160-ft extension to the operation’s molding and coremaking area, approximately doubling molding capacity. In its announcement Bradken predicted the 18-month project would improve product flow within the foundry and allow it to make more effective use of the downstream manufacturing facilities.

New process equipment to be installed includes molding machinery, cranes, and furnaces, according to Bradken North American division president Tom Armstrong. He said the expansion would allow Bradken-Amite to increase its capabilities and capacity to produce customized steel castings. “The decision to choose the Amite facility for this expansion was made easier due to our existing excellent workforce base and the assistance and benefits provided by the Louisiana Department of Economic Development,” according to Armstrong.

The completed projects will result in a net increase of 171 workers, bringing total employment for Bradken Amite to approximately 350.

Bradken Ltd. is an Australian industrial and metalcasting group that gained majority ownership of the AmeriCast Technologies chain in 2008. Armstrong said the capital investment program at Amite “will provide added flexibility between Bradken’s North American manufacturing facilities, and through transfer of product, enable us to manufacture Bradken wear products at other of our facilities,” concluded Armstrong.

Bradken-Amite casts and machines large, complex steel shapes weighing up to 55,000 lb, for customers supplying mining, construction, dredging, oil-and-gas, and marine markets.

“This expansion is an investment and commitment to support our customers,” stated Kevin McDermed, president of the Industrial Division of Bradken’s North American operations.

“We need to expand our capacity to meet the long-term demand of our customers and the growing markets they serve, and are pleased to have the opportunity to undertake such a significant expansion to our operations. Our strong customer base serves worldwide markets, which are projected to grow. We want to be in a position to meet those demands,” McDermed concluded.