Lion Elastomers announces $22 million expansion for Geismar plant

Staff Report
Lion Elastomers' Geismar facility began operations in 1964 as the United States Rubber Company. Lion purchased the site in 2007.

Synthetic rubber manufacturer Lion Elastomers has invested $22 million to construct a new multi-level production building housing two new finishing lines at its manufacturing facility in Ascension Parish, Louisiana Economic Development announced.

The expansion will increase production capacity at the plant, which supports the supply chains of automobile tire manufacturers and production of a broad range of other rubber goods, according to an LED news release. With the reinvestment in its Geismar plant, Lion Elastomers will retain 176 Capital region jobs.

“Lion’s Geismar manufacturing facility has provided jobs for Louisiana’s skilled workers for nearly 60 years,” Gov. John Bel Edwards said. “The company’s commitment to update and expand its operation ensures that those jobs will remain in Ascension Parish for many years to come. Once again, we see the strength of Louisiana’s manufacturing sector, and the important role our state plays in the manufacture of consumer goods used around the world.”

The Geismar facility began operations in 1964 as the United States Rubber Company, later becoming Uniroyal Chemical Company and then Chemtura. Lion Elastomers, which also has manufacturing facilities in Port Neches and Orange, Texas, purchased the site in 2007.

“Louisiana and Ascension Parish are favorable locations for investment due to a strong workforce, availability of raw materials and utilities, and central location to distribute products to North American and international markets,” said Steve Isaacs, Director of Process Technology and Optimization. “This project will strengthen Lion Elastomers’ manufacturing position, enhance quality and service for EPDM consumers, and protect and/or expand jobs at the Geismar site.”

Lion Elastomers began construction on the new 8,405-square-foot structure in Q3 2021. The company says it has achieved substantial completion and is in the commissioning phase, with full commercial production to follow before the end of the year.

To secure the project, the State of Louisiana offered Lion Elastomers an incentive package that includes a performance-based $375,000 Retention and Modernization grant.

“The importance of the Highway 30 corridor cannot be overstated,” said Ascension Parish President Clint Cointment. “By investing in its Geismar facility and sustaining the local workforce, Lion ensures continued growth in a thriving industrial area supported by the parish, region and state.”