Lutz Heidrich

Harry Funk/The Almanac

Lutz Heidrich conducts a tour of the new Hennecke Inc. headquarters in South Fayette Township.

BRIDGEVILLE – The world’s top polyurethane processing machinery maker continues its Western Pennsylvania presence with a move to South Fayette Township.

A March 5 open house ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the symbolic opening of Hennecke Inc.’s North American headquarters in the new Alpine Point development, next to Interstate 79 off Alpine Road.

Gwen Rodi

Harry Funk/The Almanac

South Fayette Township Commissioner Gwen Rodi welcomes Hennecke Inc.

The corporation is a subsidiary of the Germany-based Hennecke Group, which traces its roots to 1945, when founder Karl Hennecke envisioned opportunities for polyurethane, a plastic material that can be either rigid or flexible, in the massive reconstruction of post-World War II Europe.

“The main business for us here is basically service and engineering,” said Lutz Heidrich, Hennecke Inc. general manager. “The main building of the machines is mostly in either China, Italy or Germany. So there’s no heavy, let’s say, manufacturing here.”

The 35,000-square-foot Alpine Point facility features more office and conference space then Hennecke’s previous location in Cecil Township. Other amenities in the new building are a research-and-development laboratory, state-of-the-art warehouse, and conference and engineering areas designed to foster communication and collaboration.

Lutz Heidrick toasts

Harry Funk/The Almanac

Lutz Heidrich leads a toast for the new headquarters.

Designed and constructed by commercial real estate development company Al. Neyer, the building incorporates some of the materials that Hennecke’s Pennsylvania customers produce, including insulation by Hunter Panels of Fayette County and water heaters by Bradford White, based in Montgomery County.

Overall, polyurethane is used for products in a variety of industries, including automotive, transportation, refrigeration, household goods, marine and aerospace, footwear, clothing, sporting goods, furniture, and building and construction.

Hennecke has had a U.S. presence since 1967 and has been in the Pittsburgh area for 42 years, at one point as a Bayer subsidiary.

“Bayer made the chemicals, and we were their, basically, machine division,” Heidrich explained.

In 2008, the American component became an independent company renamed Hennecke Inc., at that point employing 33 people. As of 2019, that number has grown to 53.

Worldwide, Hennecke Group has about 800 employees. The current owner is Swiss private equity firm Capvis Equity Partners A.G.

Hennecke building

Harry Funk/The Almanac

The new Hennecke Inc. headquarters in South Fayette Township

Representing South Fayette during the open house, township commissioners Gwen Rodi and Rebecca Sray participated in the ribbon cutting along with Heidrich and Alois Schmid, managing director of Hennecke GmbH in Sankt Augustin, Germany.

“We’re very excited to have you here, to have you part of our community,” Rodi said. “And we want to watch you grow with our growth, as well.”

Heidrich led a toast among guests on behalf of the new headquarters.

“In the end, this is a building. But what makes this building, makes our business, is the people inside, and that’s what I’m most proud of,” he said.

For more information, visit www.hennecke.com/en.

Ribbon cutting

Harry Funk / The Almanac

Shown at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for Hennecke Inc. are, from left, Gwen Rodi and Rebecca Sray, South Fayette Township commissioners; Alois Schmid, managing director of Hennecke GmbH; and Lutz Heidrich, general manager of Hennecke Inc.

Multimedia Reporter

Staff writer Harry Funk, a professional journalist for three-plus decades, has been on the staff of The Almanac since 2015. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and master of business administration, both from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

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