A Kentucky firm at full capacity is taking a creative path toward a new injection molding site.
Seven investors with direct or indirect connections to Caldwell Industries Inc. acquired 121/2 acres in Shively, Ky., for $150,000 and will use 21/2 acres to build a new facility, which Caldwell will lease. The investors aim to build light manufacturing facilities on the remaining acreage, or possibly sell it.
``In order to grow, we must expand the operation,'' James Winchell said in a telephone interview.
Winchell is Caldwell's chief financial officer and managing member of New Millennium Development Co. LLC, a real estate firm the investors formed in June to buy the site.
Caldwell plans a facility of 20,000-30,000 square feet as a replacement for an 11,000-square-foot Louisville plant that is three miles away.
``We hope to start construction in late February,'' Winchell said.
An attractive land price and an analysis of where ``our present and future employees live'' helped determine the new location.
A Caldwell facility in Auburn in southwestern Kentucky has origins back to the 1860s, mostly in leather and die cutting of nonmetallic materials. New owners acquired the business in 1985, expanded into plastic injection molding and now operate five machines with clamping forces of 245-385 tons there. Caldwell employs 55 in Auburn and continues that operation in a largely captive relationship with a key customer.
The company entered the Louisville market in September 1995 at a temporary second location that it has outgrown, Winchell said.
Caldwell employs 46 in Louisville, including 35 at the molding facility. It has 10 presses of 50-300 tons making custom parts for automotive, appliance and furniture applications.
A separate structure houses corporate headquarters employing seven and a full-service toolmaking operation employing four mold makers.
Winchell said Caldwell has annual sales of about $12 million.