Automotive market growth fuels injection molders

By Don Loepp
Editor

Published: June 21, 2013 1:09 pm ET
Updated: June 21, 2013 1:24 pm ET

Image By: Rich Williams

Related to this story

Topics Automotive, Injection Molding

This is a good time to be an automotive supplier. IHS Automotive projects that automakers will build 16.1 million cars and trucks in North America this year. That's up 4 percent from 2012 — and more than in any year since 2002.

Dennis DesRosiers, a Canadian-based auto analyst, said recently that two of the Big Three automakers are running at more than 100 percent capacity — meaning they're using a lot of overtime — and the third is close to capacity. The good news is fueling growth for the North American injection molding sector, which Plastics News ranks in a two-part special report that wraps up this week.

Last week we ranked the top 100, and I posted an item in "The Plastics Blog" noting that automotive molders reported a whopping 17 percent increase in sales in 2012.

A small part of that is related to rising costs, for sure, but it is clear that automotive molders are growing.

There's more growth this week: Our ranking of 460 smaller firms shows an average sales increase of 8.4 percent over last year. Anecdotally, we can report that this trend isn't just about growth at existing firms. PN has had quite a few stories recently about new molders joining the North American auto market. Some are overseas suppliers following growth at transplant automakers. Some are brand-new companies.

This is something we couldn't have imagined just a few years ago, when auto suppliers hit hard by the recession were closing plants, and many were desperately trying to get a foothold in other markets, like medical devices.

KPMG AG recently surveyed auto supplier executives and found that most are bullish about current prospects. They're hiring talented new workers again, investing in more efficient equipment and running their plants flat-out.

The North American automotive plastics sector is benefiting from more than unit growth. It's poised to pick up business from OEMs desperate to cut vehicle weight to improve fuel economy. Automakers also are expected to introduce lots of new models in the next few years, as they battle for consumers' attention — and for market share.

Are North American molders — and their supply chain — ready for Detroit's resurgence? They'd better be, because competitors in weaker global markets will have their eye on a piece of the pie.

Loepp is PN editor and author of "The Plastics Blog."


Comments

Automotive market growth fuels injection molders

By Don Loepp
Editor

Published: June 21, 2013 1:09 pm ET
Updated: June 21, 2013 1:24 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Austria's Greiner building a foothold in the US rigid packaging market

April 15, 2014 1:22 pm ET

Greiner Packaging International GmbH, one of Europe's largest makers of rigid plastic packaging, now wants to make its mark in the United States.    More

Mexico reports rising auto production

April 14, 2014 1:18 pm ET

MEXICO CITY — Mexico’s automotive industry assembled an unprecedented 774,731 light vehicles in the first quarter, 6.5 percent up on the...    More

Image

Add electronic fraud to the list of business fears

April 14, 2014 12:39 pm ET

The owners of Wrap-Tite Inc. are soft-spoken professionals, but you could feel the humiliation and anger in the voices of Sunny Daga and Suresh Bafna ...    More

Image

Engel creates new Wintec brand for Asia

April 11, 2014 2:17 pm ET

Engel Holding GmbH has formed a new subsidiary in China that will sell injection molding machinery in Asia under a new brand name: Wintec.    More

Image

Lanxess launches new compounding plant in Brazil aimed at auto market

April 11, 2014 12:32 pm ET

Lanxess AG has officially opened its auto-oriented thermoplastics compounding plant in Porto Feliz, Brazil.    More

Market Reports

Thermoformed Packaging 2014 Market Review & Outlook North America

This in-depth report provides analysis and discussions of economic and political conditions, market trends, legislative/regulatory activity impacting supply and demand, business opportunities and threats, materials pricing, manufacturing technology, as well as strategies being implemented by thermoformed packaging companies. In addition, there are reviews of 25 leading thermoformers in the packaging segment, assessing their growth initiatives and performance metrics over 10 years.

Learn more

Automotive Market Review and Outlook 2014 The Americas

This 75-page report features in-depth analysis of the automotive industry for the Americas. It includes discussions of market trends, legislative/regulatory activity impacting production and threats as well as design strategies being implemented by the major automakers. Detailed charts and data tables outline North American automotive production over the last five years.

Learn more

Plastics Building & Construction Market Review and Outlook 2014 with MS Excel chart data

This report provides in-depth analysis of the plastic building and construction market for North America, including discussions of trends, opportunities, threats and the latest developments in construction trends that impact plastics processors.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

May 6, 2014 - May 8, 2014Plastics in Medical Devices 2014

May 12, 2014 - May 12, 2014Plastics News Brazil Pharma Summit

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

February 3, 2015 - February 7, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events