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Special effects manufacturer gears up for move to Lower Macungie

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Smooth On will be moving to this Lower Macungie property.
Smooth On will be moving to this Lower Macungie property.

A manufacturer of special effects products has started preparing for its transition from one Lehigh Valley location to another.

Smooth-On Inc., a manufacturer of mold-making and casting materials used as special effects products for the film industry, sculptures, architectural materials and other uses, is moving from its Easton facility near Interstate 78 to a 358,000-square-foot property the company bought in East Texas in Lower Macungie Township.

The 31-acre property consists of 10 interconnected industrial/flex buildings and sold for $3.5 million, according to Cushman & Wakefield National Industrial, the commercial real estate services firm that conducted the sale. The site offers parking for more than 740 spaces, according to Cushman & Wakefield.

Smooth-On plans to use the building as its headquarters and a manufacturing center.

“It’s a perfect site for us; it’s a friendly business environment, good, quality workforce,” said Trey Bianco, president of Smooth-On.

Bianco said the property was much bigger than it was seeking and will bring about 135 employees to the new site. The Easton location is about 2,000 square feet, he said.

Day-Timer, a division of ACCO Brands, sold the property and was represented by the Cushman & Wakefield team of Gerry Blinebury, Patrick McBride and Adam Campbell in the firm’s Harrisburg office. Mike Adams, senior vice president of NAI Summit in South Whitehall Township, represented the buyer.

Blinebury told Lehigh Valley Business that Smooth-On has started the process to move.

Adams confirmed the company should be fully moved into the new facility by the end of the year.

While the move will not occur until the fourth quarter, the new home is going to be under construction over the next few months, Bianco said.

“I think every manufacturing operation is somewhat unique, given the growing manufacturing base with companies such as Bimbo Bakeries and Ocean Spray [recently opening nearby],” Blinebury said. “Currently, the [Lehigh Valley] industrial market is at a 3 percent vacancy rate. That is an all-time low for many markets.”

Smooth-On’s special effects products have appeared in numerous movies, including Jurassic Park, Anaconda, Free Willy, Star Wars, Star Trek, Die Hard, all Harry Potter Movies, James Bond films and the Matrix series.

Bill Hindle, president and owner of Hindle Power Inc., an industrial float battery charger manufacturer in Easton, said his company purchased the nearby Smooth-On building and plans to expand at some future time. Hindle Power is located at 1075 St. John St. in Easton.

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Brian Pedersen

Brian Pedersen

Reporter Brian Pedersen covers construction, development, warehousing and real estate and keeps you up to date on the changing landscape of our community. He can be reached at brianp@lvb.com or 610-807-9619, ext. 4108. Follow him on Twitter @BrianLehigh and read his blog, “Can You Dig It,” at http://www.lvb.com/section/can-you-dig-it.

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