By Ashley M. Casey
Sung An Machinery’s North American arm — better known as SAM-NA, LLC — has made a new home for itself in the Oswego County Industrial Park in Schroeppel.
Local legislators and business owners attended the center’s ribbon cutting Jan. 21.
The 10,000-square-foot facility houses SAM’s new Extrusion Technology Center and marketing office, which will allow SAM’s North and South American customers to see firsthand how new extrusion and lamination technologies can be applied.
The facility currently employs seven people — mostly engineers — but is projected to hire seven more.
Extrusion coating is a process that binds multiple layers of polymers together to create flexible packaging and other products, such as potato chip bags, juice cartons, disposable diapers and plastic packing tape.
Based in South Korea, SAM has headquarters in Italy and Granby, N.Y. and more than 600 machine installations in 27 countries across the globe.
SAM-NA has had an office in Granby since 2010, which has been a support and service organization for SAM-NA.
“We’re excited about this. It’s a great addition to the Industrial Park,” said L. Michael Treadwell, CEO of the County of Oswego Industrial Development Agency and executive director of Operation Oswego County.
Treadwell said that SAM first contacted IDA about expanding in the summer of 2011.
“They had to sell this project to the parent company in South Korea,” Treadwell said.
Officials from SAM’s Korea headquarters visited the Industrial Park and agreed to purchase and modify the building, which sits on two-and-a-half acres of land. The building previously served as the IDA’s startup “incubator” site.
Andy Christie, managing director of SAM-NA, said that the company made a lot of modifications to the building before moving in, including new power, floors, a furnace and other renovations. Treadwell estimated the investment in the building to be about $2.5 million.
“We’ve made a substantial investment to improve this building, as well as bring in the pilot extrusion and laminating line,” Christie said.
The pilot machine, which is mainly for demonstration and product testing, cost about $2 million. A full-size extrusion machine costs $3.5 million.
“Ninety percent of the (work) was done by Oswego County contractors,” Christie said.
Holly Carpenter, a spokesperson for New York state Sen. Patty Ritchie, said that Sen. Ritchie extended a warm welcome to SAM-NA’s new business site and applauded their support of local contractors.
“Small business is the backbone (of New York state), and we’re so pleased to have you here,” Carpenter said.
“It just gives Oswego County another success story in terms of attracting manufacturing with an internationally known company,” Treadwell said.