Bimetalix Ltd., a Sullivan, Wis., maker of barrels for extruders and injection molding, has purchased Progressive Alloys Inc., which specializes in making barrels for parallel twin-screw extruders.
Bimetalix will center all twin-barrel production at Progressive Alloys' factory in Lynchburg, Va., and keep single-screw production in Wisconsin, according to Bimetalix Vice President David Hotchkiss. The company specializes in bimetallic barrels, known for offering superior durability, corrosion and abrasion resistance.
Hotchkiss said the Progressive factory will be the only North American plant dedicated strictly to bimetallic barrels for twin-screw extruders. The barrels go into extruders that do compounding and turn out pipe and profiles.
Terms of the deal, announced Jan. 5, were not disclosed.
After picking up Progressive's 18 employees, Bimetalix now employs a total of about 50 at the 12,000-square-foot Lynchburg plant and the 22,000-square-foot Wisconsin plant, Hotchkiss said.
Bimetalix changed its name last year from Wisconsin Bimetallic Corp. The barrel maker was founded in 1984. The company sells single, twin, conical or straight barrels to the plastics and food-processing industries. The firm can produce single barrels with interior diameters as large as 500 millimeters. For twin-screw extruders, Bimetalix can make barrels in sizes from 20-300mm.
A much younger company, Progressive Alloys was founded in 1997 by several former employees of Lynchburg barrel maker Wexco Corp. Production began in 1998.
Hotchkiss said Bimetalix works with small and midsize machinery makers, and with screw manufacturers. Bimetalix does not sell direct to processors.
"We've kind of been the quiet barrel company," he said.