Arrival of Swedish manufacturer in Brunswick will make Maine ‘a more competitive state,’ development official says
BRUNSWICK, Maine — A state official last week promised Maine will be more attractive to businesses thanks to a Swedish wound-care manufacturer that celebrated its new location at Brunswick Landing.
The recently completed, $14 million facility at 192 Admiral Fitch Ave. will soon be the home to Molnlycke Manufacturing, an arm of Molnlycke Health Care. It will provide about 50 “high-quality, professional-skilled” jobs by the end the summer, according to company officials.
Speaking to an audience that included politicians, business owners and government officials, Maine Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner George Gervais said the company “will make Maine a more competitive state.”
“We need to take this ceremony site to site and repeat this over and over again,” Gervais said at the March 15 event. He said Molnlycke will help make Brunswick Landing a magnet for more companies in the future.
Molnlycke has already hired around two dozen employees, according to site director Mark Dignum. It will begin installing $35 million worth of “state-of-the-art” manufacturing equipment in April.
Molnlycke’s parent company creates a variety of health-care products; the Brunswick subsidiary will focus on manufacturing an advanced bandage product with a patented adhesive technology that was previously made in Finland.
According to the company, Molnlycke sold $1.5 billion in advanced wound-care products in 2012. Dignum said the company also has the largest market share for advanced wound-care products in the U.S. and the second largest in the world.
Dignum told the audience that Molnlycke “already has growth ambitions to expand this facility,” but on Monday clarified that expansion “is probably a number of years away.”
“What will happen this year is we will probably be a single-shift operation,” Dignum said. “As we continue to grow our market share in the U.S., we will transfer to a double shift, where we will need about 20 more operators.”
Dignum said Molnlycke chose Brunswick Landing because of its proximity to Rynel, a Wiscasset-based subsidiary purchased by Molnlycke in 2011, which creates the foam used in the advanced bandage product.
“It makes sense to have it in the U.S. It’s our fastest growing market, and it’s just 20 minutes down the road,” Dignum said, explaining that Rynel will continue to ship its foam to Molnlycke’s European facilities until the Brunswick plant is ready. He said once everything is in place, it will allow the company to save more money and be more environmentally friendly.
In addition, he said, the Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority offered a site with tax incentives that made sense for the company. He said it also helped that the U.S. was becoming its biggest market.
“We recognized as business that we have all of our eggs in one basket,” Dignum said. “The risk mitigation aspect makes sense for us to have a second facility.”