Heartland connects for grand slam at NPE 24

The Heartland team reflects on a “hugely successful” debut at major show.

Exceeding expectations is at the very core of the Heartland Polymers business strategy, and that theme carried through the brand’s debut at the first gathering of NPE in six years during NPE2024 in Orlando May 6-10. NPE was cancelled three years ago for COVID, but this year it was back in a big way, and it was exciting for Heartland Polymers’ debut to be a big part of that story.

As the first single-site PDH/PP facility in North America, and Canada’s only polypropylene producer, the Heartland brand was ready to shine at a show that features 2,000 exhibitors in more than a million square feet of exhibit space. True to its iconic ‘Canadiana’ brand that embraces the best things about its unique location in northern Alberta, the booth was open concept with northern lights dancing above the second-story meeting space and nostalgic train-inspired creative flowing around the sides. The underlying theme for the team on-site was in bringing to life the brand tagline, ‘We believe in better’ – from production technology to reliable shipments backed by personal-touch service.

The booth was a big hit, but it was the sheer amount of valuable connections made that truly defined the team’s success. Heartland showed up with solid bench strength, from senior leadership to sales and technical support, product development and customer service.

“This was a great opportunity to physically show up in the marketplace,” said Todd Karan, CEO of Heartland Polymers, who has more than 30 years of experience in the industry. “The resin business is a relationship-based business, and NPE provided the opportunity for our team to have meaningful connections with our current customers and conversations with those we hope to work with all under one roof.”

“This was a great opportunity to physically show up in the marketplace.”
Todd Karan, CEO of Heartland Polymers

Yonas Kebede, Heartland’s Director of sales and marketing, said “I think we hit a home run for connecting with people. We had a lot of interest in our random copolymers coming online. I wish there was time to walk the show more, but we were absolutely inundated. The traffic was as busy as I’ve ever seen it. For four days, we had non-stop enquiries and meetings, and it reminds you why you love this business: the people.”

Unexpected requests about diverse application of their resins were also a highlight for the team. Already seeing strong results in the film extrusion market with high-quality resins in the non-wovens and thermoforming markets, outside-the-box questions proved the company’s ability to customize is getting around.

“We had some requests about getting NSF certification for one of our products,” said Technical Services Specialist Julio Muzquiz. “It shows me that specialized market might just be beginning to realize we’re here, and that we have some unique capabilities.”

The grand slam, according to Alberta Blanco, Heartland’s Account Manager for distribution and export channels, was the response from international visitors. There is a lot of interest from Mexico, South America, and overseas. Alberto has a long list of contacts to follow up with after he gets back home and catches his breath.

“We had a lot of interest from overseas, and everyone who has used our material says it runs really well,” said Alberto. “Distributers are getting requests from their customers for more of our product. The demand for export is significant. We could ship as much as we want.”

Until 2027, keep your eye on Heartland Polymers. Better is on the way.