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A peek behind our top 100 North American injection molders

By: Don Loepp

June 17, 2013

This week Plastics News publishes our annual ranking of the top 100 North American injection molders. Let's take a look at some of the numbers and trends from our respondents:

The top 100 represent over $29 billion in sales. Some 92 percent of the companies reported higher sales this year, even without mergers or acquisitions. Unlike years past, resin pricing pass-thorough was not the primary reason for the increase. Nylon and polypropylene resin prices rose just over 8 percent last year, but high density polyethylene, ABS and polycarbonate all averaged under 1 percent in change.

It was a good year to be an automotive supplier, with North American production numbers trending up 17 percent for our top 100 molders that list the auto market as a major sector. That's way over the 2011 average of 11 percent sales growth.

Second to automotive, those firms serving medical devices or components grew modestly at 3 percent. Those firms serving the beauty or home products markets saw declines, and most packaging firms remained flat.

Only a few custom/contract molders reported any growth.

Looking at movement by the individual companies, it's notable that after a long run near the top of our ranking, Automotive Components Holdings LLC drops down to No. 36 this year, the result of divesting several plants.

For 2013, we welcome these companies to our Top 10:

BWay Corp. of Oak Brook, IL comes in at No. 8, thanks to the acquisition of Ropak Packaging

Illinois Tool Works Inc. of Glenview, Ill,, which is often just in and out of the top 10, comes back in at No. 10 this year.

Welcome to the ranking and to the Top 100:

Royal Technologies Corp. of Hudsonville, Mich.

ITW Medical Products of Hebron, Ill., now that the division includes Coeur Holding Co.

Classic Industries Inc. of Latrobe, Pa.

Want more information? Visit our top 100 ranking online at www.plasticsnews.com/rankings/injection-molders

If you work for a company that is missing from the ranking, we would like to include you next time. Just send a note to Hollee Keller at hkeller@crain.com or mail your information to Plastics News, 1725 Merriman Road, Akron, Ohio 44313.

Thanks to Hollee Keller for today's peek behind the data -- and to both Lisa Pyles and Hollee Keller for their research on this year's project.