Since their buyout of Associated Thermoforming Inc. in August 1995, the owners have focused on growing the business. This month ATI installed its third computer numerically controlled five-axis router at a newly leased facility in Berthoud, Colo., that gives it 7,000 square feet of additional space, said John Nix, president and general manger.
Nix, who has been ATI's general manager for nine years, was among a group of managers and employees who bought out former majority shareholder Steve Spelts for undisclosed terms.
The plant, ATI's fourth in Berthoud, will allow it to boost capacity early next year with a Maac multistation rotary former.
The MotionMaster router and Maac rotary are a $600,000 investment for the firm, which focuses on demanding, high-tolerance parts, Nix said. ATI also is installing a $100,000 computer integrated manufacturing software system, MRP II from Symix. The program integrates functions such as order entry, production control, accounting, inventory, shipping and receiving and capacity planning in real-time.
``It lets us do a better job of forecasting deliveries, managing materials. It basically allows us to run a larger company without adding staff,'' Nix said.
As for staff, ATI has 65 workers, but will hire roughly six more during the next year as capacity, and business, expand.
ATI's four plants give it a total of 46,000 square feet. Nix said the company needs extra capacity partly because of an effective full-time sales manager hired on about a year ago.
A main piece of the firm's business is pressure forming equipment enclosures for the medical market, among others. But its parts include motorcycle accessories, wheelchair parts, parts for computers, digital scanners and heating pads for pets; and its customer base also is diverse, spanning Washington state to Ohio.
``People come to us this far away because we can make parts to print,'' Nix said.