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Apr.  6, 2018
Toray Industries, Inc.
Zoltek Companies, Inc.
Toray Increases Production Capacity for
Large tow Carbon fiber

Toray Industries, Inc. (headquarters: Chuo-ku, Tokyo; President: Akihiro Nikkaku; hereinafter referred to as “Toray”) has decided to increase large tow1 carbon fiber production capacity at their US-based subsidiary, Zoltek Companies, Inc. (headquaters: Saint Louis, MO; CEO: Yoshihiro Takeuchi; hereinafter referred to as “Zoltek”). With this facility expansion, they are planning to increase production capacity at Zoltek’s Hungarian facility (located in Nyergesújfalu) by 50 percent from 10,000 tons to 15,000 tons annually. The entire investment exceeds 130 million USD and production will start in early 2020. Zoltek is currently implementing enhancements to equipment to raise the capacity of their Mexican facility from 5,000 tons per year to 10,000 tons per year. Once the current enhancements at the Hungarian facility are in place, Zoltek’s total annual production capacity will be approximately 25,000 tons. Demand for large tow carbon fiber is rapidly expanding for industrial applications. Demand for wind energy turbine blades, the main application of Zoltek’s large tow carbon fiber, is expanding in South America as well as in Asia, particularly China and India. Furthermore, due to the large size of the turbines, there is an expected increase in demand for large tow carbon fiber, which will likely result in further expansion. In particular, additionally, in Europe, where the use of carbon fiber for automotive structural applications is taking precedent, Zoltek has established a timely supply chain from the Hungarian facility, which is currently expanding its production capacity. By rapidly responding to future demand increases, Toray Group, including Zoltek, aims to become the global standard for automotive structural applications. Zoltek will continue to enhance their carbon fiber production equipment at the Hungarian and Mexican facilities, and will maintain their place as the world’s number one supplier of large tow carbon fiber. In the medium-term management project “Project AP-G 2019,” Toray places the carbon fiber composite material business, a strategically expanding venture, and plans to proceed with business expansion by introducing active managerial resources. Toray will focus on expanding in areas that can demonstrate their respective strengths with regular tow2 and large tow carbon fiber and will aim for further expansion of business by developing “synergistic effect” opportunities that take advantage of the merits of both products.

1 –Large tow: carbon fiber having more than 40K filaments (40,000 fibers) used as a relative low-priced product that satisfies the required characteristics for industrial applications such as wind energy turbine blades and strengthening agents for resin compounds.
2 –Regular tow: carbon fiber with up to 24K filaments (24,000 fibers) used for applications requiring high performance and high quality such as aircraft/aerospace and pressure vessels.
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<REFERENCE>
Overview of Zoltek Companies, Inc. (Zoltek)
1.) Description :Manufacturing and sales of large tow carbon fiber composite materials and flame resistant fibers.
2.) HQ Location:Saint Louis, Missouri USA
3.) Established:1975 (converted into a subsidiary of Toray Industries, Inc. in February 2014)
4.) Representative:Yoshihiro Takeuchi, President and CEO
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