Lenzing will invest US$293 million (275 million euro) in constructing a state-of-the-art 90,000-ton/year Tencel fiber plant in Mobile, Alabama, U.S. The new plant is scheduled to start operation in the first quarter of 2019.
Technical expertise is being strengthened by creating a new management board role, and Heiko Arnold has been appointed Chief Technology Officer.
The Lenzing Group aims to increase the share of specialty fibers as a percentage of revenue to 50% by 2020. Following the previously announced expansion plans for Lenzing, Heiligenkreuz (Austria) and Grimsby (U.K.), the Supervisory Board of Lenzing AG has approved investments for a Tencel fiber plant in the U.S.
The new facility will be the largest Tencel fiber plant in the world, and will utilize the latest technological standards.
The Lenzing Group currently has a worldwide Tencel fiber production capacity of 222,000 ton/year. The new plant in Mobile plus the already announced debottlenecking projects at other sites will increase the total Tencel fiber capacity by more than 50% by 2019. The decision to build the new plant in the U.S. was supported by the good infrastructure at the Mobile site and attractive energy costs.
Lenzing CEO Stefan Doboczky explains, “This investment represents another major milestone in the implementation of our corporate strategy sCore TEN. It will bring us a big step further to reach our target of 50% revenue from specialty fibers by 2020.”