Plastikos expands clean-room molding

Mike Verespej

Published: November 7, 2012 6:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Medical Injection Molding
Companies & Associations

ERIE, PA. (Nov. 7, 4:15 p.m. ET) — To increase its capabilities for medical device manufacturing, custom injection molder Plastikos Inc. is in the process of adding a third press for its Class 10,000 clean room at its headquarters plant in Erie.

“There is no firm date by when that will be completed, but we are working to integrate that press now,” said president and general manager Philip Katen in a Nov. 7 phone interview.

He said the new 88-ton Arburg Allrounder press will be the second press of that size for the clean room, which also has a 66-ton press.

“We are adding it to expand our footprint in medical device manufacturing,” Katen said. “It is part of our evolution to increase the value we bring to our customers.”

In just a short period of time, he said, medical device manufacturing has become a significant contributor to the revenues of the company which was the Plastics News’ Processor of the Year in 2010.

“A few years ago, we had very little revenues from medical—maybe 5 percent—and no clean room,” Katen said.

When the clean room—completed in early 2011—was under construction in mid-2010, medical was 10 percent of the company’s revenues. “Today it accounts for 15 percent of our revenues and is approaching 20 percent,” Katen said.

PN’s rankings of injection molders this year listed $16.8 million in sales for the company’s fiscal year that ended Oct. 31, 2011.

“In the next two to three years we see medical approaching or exceeding 25 percent” of the company’s revenues, Katen said. “Three-to-five years from now we’d like it to be at least one-third of our revenues and hopefully we will get it to be 50 percent of our revenues and maybe beyond” after that.

The new press “will increase our capacity significantly and give us the ability to deliver products to customers on shorter lead times,” Katen said. “It will enable us to provide customers with quicker turnarounds.”

The Plastikos president believes the company’s Class 7 clean room gives it an advantage in competing for medical applications that require an extra-clean manufacturing environment.

“Our ISO level Class 7 clean room is one-quarter of a magnitude cleaner that the ISO-level 8 clean room most medical manufacturers have,” he said. “It gives the ability to produce product and inspect product in an even cleaner environment for applications that require an even cleaner [manufacturing] environment.”

He declined to specify any specific product or market segments that the company was targeting. But he said the company currently supplies dental care components, products for eye care, diabetes care, fluid delivery systems — both liquid and air, and surgical applications where precision is required.

“Precision manufacturing and high-end, highly engineered parts with tight tolerances fit our expertise,” he said.

Down the road, an expansion of the clean room or an additional facility for medical manufacturing is a possibility, he said.

“When we would do an expansion would be difficult to specify,” he said. “We have additional capacity at our existing manufacturing facility” because of continuing investments to make operations there “more efficient”—which increases the capability in that plant.

But “depending on how quickly we approach those targets” for medical sales, Katen said, “an expansion into a second facility could be required.”


Comments

Plastikos expands clean-room molding

Mike Verespej

Published: November 7, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

TPUs finding applications in drug-delivery applications

March 30, 2015 12:56 pm ET

Lubrizol Corp. is sending its thermoplastic polyurethane products into medical products, foam and film.    More

Image

Eastman Chemical expanding Tritan co-polyester capacity

March 27, 2015 10:00 am ET

Eastman Chemical Co.'s Tritan-brand co-polyester business continues to grow, with 35 million pounds of capacity added late last year and a second...    More

Image

Getting a real feel for how 'vinyl saves lives'

March 27, 2015 6:00 am ET

While I'm certainly not shipping off to Africa anytime soon, I got a taste of what medical professionals go through in the fight against Ebola and...    More

Image

Flextronics launches global injection molding, tooling unit

March 26, 2015 4:29 pm ET

Flextronics International Ltd. (Booth S34125) is officially launching Precision Plastics, a global injection tooling and manufacturing unit, as a...    More

Image

Intertech Medical adding presses, people

March 23, 2015 3:28 pm ET

Colorado's Intertech Medical has added five new injection molding presses and expects to add up to another four machines to keep up with a growth in s...    More

Market Reports

Flexible Packaging Trends in North America

North America represents about 30 percent of the global consumption of flexible packaging. Annual growth in this region is forecast at 4 percent during the next 5 years.

For more insight on growth opportunities, drivers of growth and the outlook for 2015, download this report.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Plastics in Mexico - State of the Industry Report

This report analyzes the $20 billion plastics industry in Mexico including sales of machinery & equipment, resins and finished products.

Our analysts provide insight on business trends, foreign investment, top end markets and plastics processing activity. The report also provides important data on exports, production, employment and value of plastics products manufactured.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events