CHICAGO — Four former Conair Jetro employees have established their own pelletizer service firm.
Tony Forgash Jr., former Jetro vice president, resigned June 10 and helped establish Bay Plastics Machinery Corp. of Bay City, Mich. His partners in the business are engineer Tom Kernstock, process engineer Dick Fetter, and salesman Mike Boyce, Forgash said in a June 17 interview at NPE 1997 in Chicago.
``It's not a revolt,'' Forgash stressed. He and his partners—one of whom left Conair some time ago—did not want to leave the area as Conair consolidates operations in Franklin, Pa. They felt they had a critical mass of experience ``to do the things we know best.''
``We were very sorry to see them leave,'' said Dick Christopher, Conair vice president of sales.
He said Jetro should not be hurt by the departures. Forgash admitted his new firm ``won't be any big threat to Conair.''
Conair President E. Niles Kenyon said his firm remains committed to pelletizers. Jetro has hired Christopher Case, formerly with Buss (America) Inc., as resin manager, plus four other degreed engineers with extensive experience.
Bay Plastics will focus on servicing, spare parts and reconditioning of strand pelletizers from all suppliers. In six months to a year, Bay Plastics hopes to design its own line of strand pelletizers for resin companies and compounders. Forgash said his company has offered to work with Conair, but Conair has not committed to any arrangement.
Forgash predicted Bay Plastics will have about 10 employees by the end of July and another three or four by the end of the year. It will contract out most of its machining needs in the Bay City area, using many of Conair's current vendors.
Forgash's father, Anthony Forgash Sr., founded Jetro in 1948 as a job shop. One of its first big contracts was work on Dow Chemical Co. polystyrene extruders at a small resin plant in Bay City, Forgash Jr. recalled. The fledgling company solved Dow pelletizing problems and decided to make its own product line.
Conair bought Jetro in 1974 and Forgash Sr. retired a few years later. Forgash Jr. joined Jetro in 1963 while he studied engineering and gradually worked his way up to president in 1976.
Christopher said Conair is moving its manufacturing to Franklin and the new plant should be operating by the end of June. Sales, marketing and administration are moving to two new buildings Aug. 25 and engineering will go into the new laboratory in November.