South Carolina-based firm buys Lookout Valley factory to make medical device components

Burner Systems International plant is shipping jobs to Mexico and Texas and closing its Chattanooga plant. The building, at 3600 Cummings Rd., was recently sold.

A year after buying MWC Technologies in Chattanooga, an Orangeburg, South Carolina-based polymer extrusion manufacturer has acquired a Lookout Valley factory to expand its local operations.

Zeus Industrial Products Inc., bought the former Burner Systems International plant on Cummings Road in Lookout Valley on Wednesday for $4.8 million and will relocate its Chattanooga operations from its leased facility on Shallowford Road into its newly acquired 143,000-square-foot facility later this year.

Burner Systems, which relocated its manufacturing operations to Texas and Mexico last year, built the plant in 1997 but moved out of the facility in early 2018.

Zeus has already doubled the four-person staff it acquired from MWC Technologies with an expanded product line, primarily for catheter components and other medical devices.

"The new Cummings Road facility will create much-needed space for current and future production," said Wayne Conley, the plant manager for Zeus Tennessee. "The capabilities of the new facility will allow us to expand existing Zeus product lines as well as introduce new product offerings more quickly and easily."

The new facility will be used for both product development and manufacturing.

"Our ongoing focus on innovation will continue to create new value streams for our customers," Conley said.

Jennifer McQuesten, the company's vice president of corporate communications, said Zeus is planning to revamp its new Chattanooga site in two phases. The first phase involves renovating about 10% of the facility for immediate use and, over time, the growing company expects to expand its operations to accommodate the entire facility.

The Chattanooga project is part of a $100 million expansion planned by Zeus, a 53-year-old privately-held company which has more than 1,700 employees in eight U.S. cities, plus a facility in Guangzhou Shi, China.

Last month, Zeus agreed to buy two facilities near its headquarters in South Carolina and is building another plant near Columbia, South Carolina.

The Chattanooga plant is part of Zeus polyimide family, which includes high-performing polymers particularly known for their high temperature and mechanical performance in addition to their chemical resistance.

Contact Dave Flessner at [email protected] or at 423-757-6340.