Johnstown Independent

Johnstown Industrial Park

Apeks looks to expand with Supercritical CO2 division

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Johnstown-based Apeks Fabrication is launching a new division -- Apeks Supercritical -- in the Johnstown Industrial Park.

Apeks, which announced its plans April 22, is expected to begin the expansion process in the next few months and likely will "bring in a few jobs," according to Andy Joseph, company president.

He said his business has two divisions.

Apeks Fabrication, which since 2001 has provided design and fabrication services (primarily stainless steel), has built turnkey systems for a diverse cross section of industries, including food products, alternative energy, medical products, industrial gas suppliers, oil and gas, and personal watercraft, among others.

Apeks Supercritical was formed to allow Apeks to focus on the growing demand for the CO2 systems Apeks has manufactured since it was founded.

Basically, Joseph said, Apeks Supercritical devises extract oils from such plants as cannabis and hemp for use in everything from fragrances to pharmaceuticals.

Joseph said it's the Apeks Supercritical division that he intends to expand into a 15,000- to 20,000-square-foot facility within the industrial park as soon as the necessary funding is raised.

According to an Apeks press release, Apeks Supercritical's flagship product, the 1500-5L and 1500-20L subcritical and supercritical CO2 botanical oil extraction systems, is in such applications as vaporizers, mint oil extracts for flavoring and kava oils for neutraceuticals. These CO2 extractions are being used by medical, neutraceutical, flavoring and topical companies because of their high-quality, clean oils that are free of residual solvent and have not experienced any thermal degradation.

"The demand for our subcritical and supercritical CO2 systems has been so strong that we felt it was necessary to devote an entire division to it," Joseph said in the release.

Joseph said Apeks Fabrication currently is operated on his property on Blamer Road and has four full-time employees and three part-timers. Joseph, a Navy veteran who spent several years as a submarine nuclear mechanic, is a former director of laboratory services group for EWI in Columbus. Several months ago, he decided to leave his full-time job and devote all of his professional time to Apeks, he said. Previously, he maintained his full-time job while also overseeing Apeks.

Johnstown Village Manager Jim Lenner said he hasn't spoken with Joseph yet but said the village administration would be happy to assist whenever Joseph decides to apply for space in the industrial park.

"The village will work with Apeks to help locate in the village in order to bring jobs to our residents and to help grow their business," he said.

Johnstown Mayor Sean Staneart agreed.

"We've always appreciated new businesses," he said, adding that the village would assist Apeks however it could whenever Joseph is ready make a move.

"Everybody wins from that," Staneart said.

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