Stretching out: Plastribution launches new elastomers business

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When the recent pandemic hit and turned business-as-usual upside down, thermoplastics distributor, Plastribution, used the time to work on a long-held plan to ‘stretch’ its portfolio – adding a complementary business in speciality elastomers. In the following article, BP&R finds out more about Elastribution, its aims and ambitions.

As the business community at large seeks to recover from the impact and implications of Covid-19, leading materials distributor, Plastribution, has been busy adding a new business unit to its existing thermoplastics team.

Known as Elastribution, the initiative will focus on elastomeric materials. With its own dedicated branding and personnel, Elastribution will apply the same core skills in sourcing, supply chain management, customer service and technical support as the existing thermoplastics business.

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“Whilst the pandemic and lockdown has been tough, we’ve tried to remain pragmatic and use the time positively to maintain momentum. Forming Elastribution has been on the radar for a while, so it seemed that now was the right time to launch. The business is a natural progression to expand the range of products we offer, as well as providing a good fit with our existing business model,” explained Plastribution’s Managing Director, Mike Boswell.

In-house experience

For the new venture to be successful it was essential to find the right person with the experience and approach to deliver the exceptional technical and commercial support expected of a Plastribution company – in March 2019, the company appointed Henry Hudson.

With over 40 years’ experience in the rubber and plastics industry and qualifications in polymer technology and management, Henry’s background includes product development, manufacturing and senior roles in technical, quality control, account management and both polymer and additive distribution.

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Henry HudsonElastribution Business Manager

“We had known of Henry through our thermoplastics business and knew him to be held in the highest regard by both customers and suppliers alike. He has vast experience in the sector but also has an exemplary reputation for his knowledge, professionalism and customer focus. We were absolutely delighted that he agreed to join the Plastribution team,” said Katherine White, Plastribution’s Commercial Director.

Henry’s specialist knowledge includes injection and compression rubber moulding, compounding and processing, rubber to metal bonding and the automotive industry. His role will be bolstered by existing members of the Plastribution team, providing expertise in supply chain and customer service.

Key relationships

The Elastribution business has built on key relationships with existing thermoplastics suppliers, as well as developing new ones, thereby allowing closer collaboration with strategic partners.

The product portfolio consists of synthetic rubbers to include NBR, IIR, SBR and IR from Sibur – the largest petrochemicals company in Russia. Bromobutyl rubbers and Chlorobutyl rubbers will be added to the range soon.

Target market sectors include rubber products and compounding for automotive, wire and cable, hoses, gaskets, construction, adhesives & sealants, footwear, PVC modification, masterbatches and recycling.

Elastribution’s portfolio also includes plastomers and elastomers from Borealis, a partner on the Queo range since 2012, when the business was purchased from Dex Plastomers – a DSM and ExxonMobil joint venture.

Products are focused on application areas demanding flexibility, high mechanical strength, sealing performance and high clarity.

Target markets include specialised flexible and rigid high-performance packaging, soft flexible mouldings and speciality compounds for the wire and cable, as well as automotive industries.

Products will be stored at Stan Robinsons in Stafford, an existing key service provider to Plastribution’s thermoplastics business.

With an excellent track record for reliability, proven by an OTIF (on time in full) rate of over 99 per cent, the standard service of next day delivery for orders placed by 2pm will apply. The warehouse can offer differing packaging formats and a wide fleet of vehicles to cater for specific customer needs.

By providing technical support and know-how, alongside cost-effective solutions, Elastribution will focus on creating added value for customers.

“We are delighted to launch Elastribution and have ambitious targets for the new business unit. By having someone of Henry’s calibre overseeing its progress, I am confident that we are well placed to create some powerful relationships in our key target markets,” concluded Mike Boswell.

This insight was kindly provided by BP&R Magazine.

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