Officials of Van Dorn Demag Corp. have decided to close the Newbury, Ohio, headquarters plant of Newbury Industries Inc. and relocate production to Van Dorn Demag facilities in the Cleveland area and South Caro-lina. Production of Newbury machines will be moved out completely by the end of June, ac-cording to spokeswoman Patrice Aylward.
The town of Newbury is east of Cleveland, about 40 miles from Van Dorn Demag's west side headquarters in Strongsville and its assembly plant on West 160th Street in Cleveland.
Newbury Industries specializes in vertical-clamp injection molding machines used for insert molding. When Van Dorn Demag announced it had completed the purchase April 2, Newbury Indus-tries employed 76. Most of those have accepted positions at the two local Van Dorn Demag facilities, Aylward said. She could not provide the number of Newbury employees hired, however.
Although Van Dorn Demag plans to retain the Newbury brand name, the move ends nearly 40 years of production of Newbury machines in the city of Newbury. Glenn Frohring founded the company in 1957. There are more than 12,000 Newbury ma-chines in operation.
Van Dorn Demag is moving assembly, engineering and parts and service to the West 160th Street location. Newbury's small machining operation will be moved to two Van Dorn Demag plants in South Carolina, in Foun-tain Inn and Duncan.
The Newbury factory could make 420 machines a year, but it was not profitable, Aylward said.
``What we found is that the Newbury product couldn't be manufactured as a stand-alone product in an independent manufacturing facility,'' she said.
Unlike horizontal-clamp injection presses, which have reached mass-production commodity status in some markets, vertical-clamp machines have remained more of a specialty machine built to customer specifications.
Van Dorn Demag hired an outplacement firm to help Newbury employees who will not be retained to find other jobs, she said. Some employees decided against the longer commute and looked for work closer to home.
Van Dorn Demag, owned by German injection press maker Mannesmann Demag AG, bought Newbury from Heico Acquisitions, a Chicago holding company. Heico bought the company from Frohring in 1993.