$30M Chemical Plant Planned for Little Rock Port


$30M Chemical Plant Planned for Little Rock Port
Parcel lines are approximate and shown for illustration only. (PAgis / Mapbox)

Development of a $30 million chemical plant is moving toward an official launch at the Little Rock Port Industrial Park.

The Little Rock Board of Directors on Tuesday approved the sale of 15 acres to Synthesia Technology Inc. for $724,995. 

The site on the south side of the Delta Plastics facility at 8801 Frazier Pike will become home for production of chemical components used by manufacturers of insulation. Synthesia, based in Spain, makes polyurethane systems for industrial applications and polyol polyesters used for footwear, reactive hot melts, and flexible and rigid foams. Its products are also used for leather, textiles, paints, coatings, adhesives and sealants.

The parent company of Synthesia was founded in 1964. It was acquired in 2018 by the Irish company Kingspan Group, which develops thermal insulation technologies with a focus on energy efficiency.

Synthesia's website lists three production plants: two in Barcelona and one in Colón, Panama. The plant in Little Rock will be its first in the U.S.

Synthesia intends to build about half the land initially and hold the rest for future expansion. The plant will employ 50 workers and generate 850 railcars of traffic yearly, which will generate revenue for the Little Rock Port Authority.

"They liked Little Rock for the ease of doing business, how friendly everyone was and how responsive we were," said Bryan Day, executive director of the port authority. "We are super excited to have another global company at the port."

James Reddish, executive vice president of Little Rock Regional Chamber, told city directors that the deal had been in the works for more than 10 months and was finalized with the help of a national consulting group.

"This is an international company that has been able to whittle down its options throughout the country, here in North America, and ultimately find the right location here in the Port of Little Rock... .," he said.

The city on Tuesday also approved resolutions authorizing Synthesia to participate in the state's Tax Back program, which provides sales and use tax refunds on the purchase of building materials and taxable machinery, and the issuance of industrial development revenue bonds for the project.