VIDALIA, La. (May 8, 2009)—Louisiana Elastomer L.L.C. has begun operations at its plant in Vidalia, according to the company.
The company has already begun exporting its “TireCycle” recycled rubber compounds to customers in China, Sri Lanka, Mexico and Germany, the firm said. Louisiana Elastomer started with 16 employees, but plans to grow eventually to 100 workers, it said.
Louisiana Elastomers' start-up began in 2007, when New Orleans-based venture capital firm Advantage Capital Partners and its small business lending unit, BizCapital, provided the $6.5 million construction loan for the 50,000-sq.-ft. plant in Vidalia. Advantage and BizCapital worked in tandem with the Louisiana New Markets Development Program, which encourages investment in small businesses in economically depressed communities within the state.