Hydro is making adjustments to the structure of its aluminum extrusion network in the United States. The company has today announced that it will cease extrusion operations at its facility in Missouri, and that it will bring new fabrication activities to its plant in Arizona.
The Monett-based plant, located in the southwest part of Missouri, was built in 1964 and acquired by Hydro in 2000. Profitability at the extrusion site has been an issue for many years, despite internal improvements, and demand in its key market segment – building and construction – has been soft and remains uncertain.
Matthew Dionne, president of Hydro’s North American aluminum extrusion business, says the company explored divestment of the plant before deciding to close the extrusion and fabrication activities. Operations are expected to conclude in October. The plant employs approximately 140 people.
“Demand in the U.S. market has picked up this year, but we are still challenged by overcapacity in our industry. It is unlikely that the Monett plant could perform in a sustainable manner moving forward,” says Dionne.
The Monett plant has two extrusion presses in addition to painting capabilities. Hydro also has an aluminum casthouse in Monett, with 60 employees. “The casthouse will remain part of our service portfolio as a supplier of quality metal,” says Dionne.
Three years ago, the company consolidated its extrusion operations from nearby Cassville to the Monett site.
Hydro announced in January that it had expanded its aluminum fabrication services in the U.S. with new operations, technical competence and increased customer support.
At its plant in Phoenix, the company has added 60,000 square feet of manufacturing space dedicated to fabrication, including CNC machining and product assembly, and has doubled its number of engineers for customer and operational support.
Hydro employs over 200 people in Phoenix, handling extrusion, drawn tube and aluminum remelt activities. The integration of the new operations is underway.
“The move will help secure the jobs at the plant and add new jobs, but the number is unclear at this point,” says Dionne. “Our intention is to create an integrated fabrication center of excellence in Phoenix for the years to come.”
With the addition of this new fabrication center, Hydro will let a previous agreement with The Offshore Group expire at the end of this year. The agreement covers metal fabrication work that Hydro has been contracting from a facility in Guaymas, Mexico.