Philadelphia molder ASK Plastics closing

By Bill Bregar
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: November 30, 2012 6:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Injection Molding

PHILADELPHIA (Nov. 30, 2:35 p.m. ET) — ASK Plastics Inc., a Philadelphia custom injection molder founded in 1945, is closing down, and Branford Group is set to auction off its equipment Dec. 12 — including several large-tonnage injection presses.

Andrew Vartanian, the president since 1990, said the recession hurt ASK.

“As the economy slowed over the past few years, we were not able to maintain a critical sales mass to sustain operations in a healthy manner,” he wrote in an email to Plastics News. “Cash-flow issues were an ongoing problem and as much as we tried we could not turn it around.”

ASK has moved its molding work to Injectron Corp. in Plainfield, N.J.

Branford, Conn.-based Branford Group will conduct the auction live at the plant and online. The gavel will fall to sell 17 injection molding presses. The largest ones are a 1995 Cincinnati Milacron with 1,500 tons of clamping force, a 1,000-ton 1995 Ube, a 1994 MIR of 1,134 tons and several presses around 700 tons.

Other machine brands include Ferromatik, Toshiba, Engel and Nissei. Most of the presses are from the mid-1990s.

The auction also will sell off auxiliary equipment, including 11 robots, temperature controllers, hot-runner controls, granulators and dryers.

Vartanian said his grandfather Harry Vartanian founded the company with two partners in 1945 and soon bought them out. At first ASK made wooden oars for the government, then the firm got into injection molding around 1950, making handles for automotive jumper cables.

His father, Andrew Vartanian Sr., and an uncle, Haig Vartanian, were partners in the business through the 1960s and 1970s. Vartanian, now the sole owner, has worked there for more than 35 years, starting as a machine operator and working his way up through every department, until he became president.

Despite ASK’s cash-flow problems, the company was paying its lender, but it struggled and eventually was unable to meet its obligations to suppliers, “who we always viewed as valued and essential business partners, many with whom we had successful long-term relationships,” Vartanian wrote.

ASK employed about 60 people. About 25 were laid off in the final days. Some found other jobs after they got a heads-up about the closing, he said.

ASK will close its doors at the end of the year when all the inventory is moved out, he wrote.

Vartanian said the decision to close the family business was “my most difficult business decision ever.”

Branford Group’s website said the auction is on behalf of the secured lender for the machinery, Capital Equipment Solutions LLC.


Comments

Philadelphia molder ASK Plastics closing

By Bill Bregar
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: November 30, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Gerresheimer opens first development center in China

October 24, 2014 1:34 pm ET

Medical molder Gerresheimer AG has launched a development center for medical plastic systems in Dongguan, China.    More

Image

SRG opens second China auto parts factory

October 24, 2014 11:25 am ET

U.S. automotive supplier SRG Global Inc. said Oct. 23 it is opening its second plant in China, an injection molding, plating and painting facility in ...    More

Image

Ford's final ACH plant, injection molder of HVAC systems, to close

October 22, 2014 1:58 pm ET

Ford Motor Co. will shed the last line of business in 9-year-old Automotive Component Holdings LLC by December when ACH closes its Plymouth, Mich.,...    More

Image

Comar merging with Convergence Packaging

October 21, 2014 5:07 pm ET

A couple of plastic packaging companies owned by private investment firm Graham Partners are merging into a single entity.    More

Image

Report: Suspected former Nazi with plastic connection collecting Social Security

October 20, 2014 3:52 pm ET

UPDATED — A one-time plastics executive in Akron is among dozens of suspected former Nazis who have been collecting U.S. Social Security payment...    More

Market Reports

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 million dollar 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

Plastics Caps & Closures Market Report

The annual recap of top trends and future outlook for the plastics caps & closures market features interviews with industry thought leaders and Bill Wood’s economic forecast of trends in growing end markets. You will also gain insight on trends in caps design, materials, machinery, molds & tooling and reviews of mergers & acquisitions.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

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

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

More Events