Kasen Nozzle Mfg. Co., Ltd. will celebrate its 70th anniversary this October. Its current five-year management program is progressing favorably with the expansion to nonwovens applications contributing to business. In the current fiscal year (ending in March 2019), which is the final year of the program, the company will start creating a structure for its 100th anniversary including the construction of a new factory.
Sales have expanded worldwide, and in addition to the major overseas markets of China and Southeast Asia, sales are expected to grow in India, Turkey and the Middle East in the current fiscal year. With plans to expand sales to Europe and the U.S., one of the priorities is to bring up talented persons who can work actively in global markets.
The numerical targets of the current five-year program have already been achieved, and so the company is moving forward in the final year with an upward revision. With a long-term vision of realizing a centennial company that can last forever by gaining a surplus every year, it was decided in this fiscal year to construct a new factory to produce various kinds of nozzles.
The building of the new factory will be constructed on the premises of the Higashiebara Factory in the City of Ibara, Okayama Prefecture. Construction starts in April, and is scheduled to be completed next spring. Kasen Nozzle President Kazuya Togawa talked about the aim of constructing the new factory, saying, “Production efficiency will be increased with the creation of a structure for the 100th Anniversary.” Although there are a number of buildings as expansions were repeatedly made in accordance with the growth of demand, the various processes in the new factory are to be integrated for increasing production efficiency as a consistent one-pass system. After the new factory goes into operation, the current factories will be utilized to develop new major lines of business such as IT.
Kasen Nozzle holds a large share in spinnerets for producing man-made fibers, and in recent years the sales of parts and lines for nonwovens are expanding. In particular, the growth for meltblow and spunbond spinnerets is sharp, and nonwovens spinnerets have become the largest business line surpassing conjugate spinnerets.
The expansion of meltblow spinnerets is attributed to the fact that one of its strengths is the straightness of pores made with specialty precision processing technology that the company takes pride in. If the positions of the pores are not aligned straightly, hot air does not fly uniformly and causes variation in the web. Variations easily appear as the web becomes thinner as in the case of meltblown nonwovens, but the company can control the alignment of pores at the micrometer level and supply products that can meet customers’ requirements for fabric weight within 5% to 10% accuracy.
Kasen Nozzle is also focusing on the development of high-pressure spec products. As the materials used for nonwovens have become more diversified, such as the use of special resins, the company has developed nozzles and dies that can withstand 5 MPa, as compared with the former highest of 3 MPa.
The R&D center located at the Higashiebara Factory plays an important role in technology development. The center has equipment for testing meltblown nonwovens, and many of its customers are utilizing it for trial production. In the future, developments in the sector of nonwovens will be further strengthened, and with an intention of making new developments even for conjugate spinning, new buds are already beginning to sprout, such as three-component yarn equipment.