After four years as a unit of a publicly held firm, a smaller Austro Mold Inc. is a private, free-standing company again and hopes to return to profitability with its new owners. Magnetic Technologies Corp. sold the Rochester, N.Y., company to Lakh Virdi, a former Eastman Kodak engineer and Austro Mold's new president, and Nathu Dandora, a Philadelphia businessman.
The sale became final July 15, two weeks before the end of Magnetic Technologies' fiscal year.
The business is leaner than in 1992. Instead of 70 employees, the company now has 50. Sales were $6 million in 1992; this year, the company expects $5 million, Virdi said.
Some customers are the same as four years ago, including Xerox Corp.'s manufacturing facility in Rochester and Eastman Kodak, Virdi said.Before the 1992 purchase, Magnetic Technologies, a supplier of proprietary magnetic parts, did not have injection molding capability.
Magnetic Technologies, also based in Rochester, had purchased Austro Mold's two facilities, in Rochester and Clearwater, Fla. The purchase was arranged as an attempt to reduce Magnetic Technologies' dependence on major customer Xerox, headquartered in Stanford, Conn.
As a subsidiary of Magnetic Technologies, Austro Mold lost $836,000 in 1994 and $1.25 million in 1995. In that time, the Clear-water operation was sold. Mag-netic Technologies' board of directors decided to sell the rest of the company earlier this year.
In a written statement, Magnetic Magnetic Technologies noted, ``While we are disappointed that we were unable to turn around the operational problems at Austro Mold, we are relieved to put this chapter behind us.''
Asked if he had any plan for turning the company around, Virdi said, ``I don't have any option. I have to make money. But I don't think that should be a problem.''
He declined to reveal terms of the sale.
He said the company has 15 injection molding machines with clamping forces of 30-500 tons in 42,000 square feet of operational space. The operation includes a fully equipped toolroom, Virdi said.