Nelipak Healthcare expanding clean room capabilities

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Photo by Roger Renstrom Seán Egan, group marketing manager at Nelipak Healthcare Packaging Inc.

Nelipak Healthcare Packaging is expanding clean room capabilities in Galway, Ireland; Heredia, Costa Rica; and Venray, the Netherlands, during 2017.

An additional clean room in Galway will house a Kiefel thermoforming line.

In August, Nelipak completed a Class 100,000 clean room addition in its Phoenix facility to house a Sencorp-brand thermoforming system.

The Cranston, Rhode Island-based company makes custom thermoformed packaging for medical devices and pharmaceuticals and a line of sealing machines. Nelipak packaging includes transit trays, intelligent/smart packaging, medical trays and blisters and surgical procedure trays.

Nelipak design and development work occurs in Cranston, Venray and Phoenix, said Seán Egan, group marketing manager. Working with software partners, Nelipak uses simulation techniques to show how a package will look when thermoformed.

Nelipak showcased its design services and displayed its in-house-made next-generation NX-T1 tabletop heat sealer at the UBM Advanced Manufacturing expo in Anaheim.

Nelipak’s NX-T1 sealer is usable in Class 10,000 and 100,000 clean rooms and works for blister packs or bigger trays. The housing “is designed to look like a medical device with a stainless steel finish,” Egan said.

Six months of research preceded Nelipak’s 2014 start of production of the $29,500 NX-T1 in Venray. The NX-T1 has parameters for heat, seal time and seal pressure and utilises Simatic-brand human machine interface technology from Siemens AG.

“We have sold 20 [NX-T1] units in the US and 17 to 18 in Europe over two years,” he said. “Ten units are on order, and a couple of the customers are making the NX-T1 standard in their operations.”

Loek Nelissen and his family founded the business in 1953 in Venray and acquired the Irish facility in 1995. Sealed Air Corp.’s medical applications business unit owned Nelipak from 2005-2013 and made two bolt-on additions: Alga Plastics Inc. of Cranston in 2007 and the ATE Costa Rica Ltd. operation of Advanced Thermoforming Enterprises in 2012.

Private equity firm Mason Wells of Milwaukee acquired Nelipak for $125m (€118m) in 2013. In turn, Mason Wells funded the additions of Debond Corp. of Phoenix, doing business as Flexpak Corp., in mid-2014, and Sonoco Products Co. subsidiary Tegrant Alloyd Brands of Puerto Rico Inc. in Juncos, Puerto Rico, in July 2016.

Nelipak has consolidated two sites in Venray to streamline its European sales, design and manufacturing functions.

Nelipak Healthcare Packaging, a trade name of Nelipak Corp., employs more than 600 worldwide.

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