TEMPE, ARIZ. - Universal Precision Tools Inc. and Paradigm Engineering Inc., both of Tempe, have joined forces to become UPT Plastics Group. President Mike Friend of Universal Precision bought a controlling interest in Paradigm, but he described the new relationship as a partnership. He said the alliance was prompted by a need to offer customers in-house product design services.
He added that the deal - the terms of which were not disclosed - is the first of several such acquisitions that are planned.
``By forming this group with Universal we immediately get the financial strength as well as the sales and marketing savvy of a much larger, well-known company,'' said Paradigm President Brad Fulghum.
Fulghum said the partnership allows Paradigm to see projects through from product concept to molding production.
``This helps my customers in knowing that I will be with them for the life of the program,'' he said.
Paradigm employs four design engineers.
Universal began in 1988 as a mold-making shop, but purchased its first injection molding presses in 1990. In January 1992, the company moved into its present 12,800-square-foot location.
Currently, Universal operates eight Toyo injection molding presses with clamping forces to 200 tons. The company has carved a niche for itself in small to medium-sized parts, and offers contract manufacturing services including assembly, hot stamping and sonic welding.
Friend said he believes that the future of the molding industry lies with smaller, entrepreneurial-based companies with flat organizational structures, focused entirely upon the needs of a customer.
``By creating the UPT Plastics Group, we will guarantee each of our member companies strength by sharing the resources of the group, but will not encumber these companies with the bureaucracy that comes with a larger, corporate environment,'' Friend said.
Additionally, UPT recently purchased 2.7 acres in Tempe where the company plans to build a plant within two years.
UPT manufactures for the electronics testing equipment, telecommunications and medical industries, and employs 45.