Creative Techniques Inc. broke ground May 28 on a 66,000-square-foot plant in Lake Orion, Mich., that will house the firm's larger presses for its materials-handling and returnable packaging business. In addition, the company will move engineering and tooling from its Auburn Hills, Mich., headquarters, and warehousing and subassembly from a leased, 20,000-square-foot facility in Sterling Heights, Mich., to the Lake Orion plant, once construction is completed Oct. 1, according to sales manager Stanley Shore.
The new site is just three miles from CTI's Auburn Hills plant, which currently operates 10 injection molding machines, with clamping forces of 200-1,000 tons, and a structural foam molding machine; another, newly purchased structural foam machine, with capacity to make an 80-pound part, is being warehoused. This fall the company will move the two structural foam machines and the 1,000-ton press to Lake Orion, Shore said.
Shore could not disclose the company's investment in the project.
CTI's niche is in highly customized materials-handling and packaging products, such as a hybrid tray used for shipping and in-line automated production at auto plants. The company's largest single customer is General Motors' Powertrain Group, he said. It processes a variety of plastics, including high density polyethylene, polypropylene and engineering resins. Its other markets include tires, consumer electronics, food processing and pharmaceuticals.
For the year ended March 31 its total sales were about $13.5 million. Shore projects sales of roughly $17.5 million for next year.
The firm last expanded in 1994, spending $870,000 to add equipment and 11,500 square feet for tooling and engineering operations at Auburn Hills. That plant has about 35,000 square feet of manufacturing and office space, and employs 130 - though some of those workers are temporary due to the firm's ``fluctuation of business,'' he added.
Although the company expects to add both equipment and employees at the Lake Orion plant, nothing is definite yet, he said.
The Sterling Heights facility will be closed.