Glove maker to build $500 million facility in county

A major manufacturer of surgical gloves has selected Brazoria County for its first U.S. manufacturing plant, the company announced Thursday.

Maxter Healthcare will build a $500 million complex on a 215-acre site at CR 52 and CR 48 just off Highway 288 in Alvin’s extraterritorial jurisdiction. The facility will be constructed in four phases and will employ 1,200 people when it is built out, the company said in a news release.

Each phase is expected to produce 400 million gloves per month for each phase. When all the four phases are completed, the total installed production capacity would be 1.6 billion gloves per month and 19.2 billion gloves per year, the release states.

“This domestic manufacturing capacity will aid the U.S. in its ability to respond to the current pandemic and help safeguard the U.S. in the future,” company founder and president Stanley Thai said in the release. “In addition, through the establishment of our research and development center and collaborations with the local and regional education institutions, we will be developing innovative new products and technologies.”

Some of the positions will be in the $35,000-a-year range, but the top 200 employees can expect to earn $60,000 to $65,000, according to an October presentation to Brazoria County Commissioners Court.

At that meeting, commissioners approved creating a Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone, which will abate the company’s real and property taxes at 100 percent for seven years. Part of the agreement is that the company will use Brazoria County businesses as vendors whenever possible.

In its announcement, Maxter Healthcare cited community support as one of the deciding factors in selecting Brazoria County over other finalists for the facility in Chambers County and Florida.

“It makes me proud of Brazoria County and I’m proud to support this project,” County Judge Matt Sebesta said. “We have a strong economy here, but it is petrochemical heavy. So when we can continue to add different components to our economic base, that’s a good thing. And when they’re bringing that many jobs, that’s a good thing.”

Maxter has opened the discussion with Brazosport College and Alvin Community Colleges about programs that could train workers, which will be another benefit to the company choosing to go local in the county, he said. It also will benefit from the county’s petrochemical industry providing some of the materials for the site.

Construction of the plant’s first phase is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2022, and gloves should be produced by the end of the year, according to the company’s announcement.

Maxter Healthcare is a subsidiary of Supermax Group, created specifically to launch a U.S. manufacturing operation. Supermax has 17 manufacturing sites worldwide, but the Brazoria County facility will be its first in the United States.

“This manufacturing facility, when operational, will strengthen the U.S. Personal Protective Equipment Supply Chain by building domestic capacities,” CEO CK Tan said. “We will be capable of catering to at least 10 percent to 15 percent of the total annual medical glove imports into the country over the next two to four years. Over the next four to six years, as our capacity increases, we will be able to provide 20 percent to 25 percent of the domestic demand and consumption.”

The dental field is one of the company’s largest customers, company representatives said in October.

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