DALLAS - Coperion Corp. - the result of a merger of Werner & Pfleiderer, Buss and Waeschle machinery outfits - is moving some manufacturing operations to W&P's U.S. headquarters in Ramsey, N.J.
Officials announced the moves at a May 8 news conference in Dallas during Antec 2001.
Currently, the Ramsey factory has 258 employees making W&P twin-screw compounding extruders. That number should grow by 30 by the end of the year, said Michael Kenny, president and chief executive officer of Coperion Corp.
Kenny is a W&P veteran. A chemical engineer, he joined the extruder company in 1979 as a mechanical systems engineer. From 1980-84, he was business manager for the polyolefins market. He worked his way up to hold top positions, including vice president of customer service and engineered systems, and vice president and general manager. He was promoted earlier this year.
Kenny reports to Hans-Jorg Pfeiffer, chief executive officer of Coperion Holding GmbH in Konstanz, Germany. The company employs more than 2,000 at 35 locations worldwide. Total sales are about $340 million.
Coperion was formed last year after Georg Fischer AG of Switzerland and an investor group bought Krupp Werner & Pfleiderer GmbH from Germany's Thyssen Krupp AG. Coperion coordinates W&P with two other plastics machinery businesses owned by Fischer: Buss, which makes kneaders, and Waeschle, a supplier of resin conveying equipment. Coperion will retain all three brand names.
Coperion claims to be the world's biggest maker of compounding and mixing machines. Sales from W&P and Buss account for about $225 million of Coperion's total sales.
At Antec, Kenny said Waeschle's U.S. assembly operations in Bloomingdale, Ill., will move to Ramsey.
Buss kneaders now are assembled only in Europe. But Kenny said Coperion executives are studying whether it makes sense to manufacture Buss machines in the United States.
W&P and Buss will have a combined technical center in Ramsey. Coperion wants to study both machines side by side.
``The goal is to be able to come to each customer and say, for each particular application, `This is where you need a twin-screw,' or, `This is where you need a kneader,''' Kenny said.
Kenny also gave out some U.S. sales numbers. He said Buss has an installed base of about 400 kneaders in the United States, most of them running at vinyl compounding, wire-and-cable-coating and powder-coating factories.
W&P boasts a U.S. base of 2,000 compounding extruders. About 200 of them are complete systems where W&P also coordinated plant layout, material flow and even construction, he said.
At Antec, Coperion announced an example of its complete system expertise. BASF Corp. hired Coperion to design and build its new, 30,000-square-foot powder-coating plant in Morganton, N.C., then equip it with machinery.
Kenny said Coperion also wants to sell more machinery to the food business.
According to Kenny, Coperion's biggest job this year is integrating the businesses. That means more than just moving people around. For example, Coperion is creating a single information-technology system to track production and financial data among all three divisions - Coperion Engineered Systems, Coperion Compounding Systems and Coperion Components.
Kenny is president of Coperion Engineered Systems. Heinz Schneider, who was president of Waeschle Inc., is now president of Coperion Components.
Also at Antec, the company announced that Guenter Simon was named president of Coperion Compounding Systems. Simon began his career in 1985 as a test engineer at the process laboratory in W&P's headquarters plant in Stuttgart, Germany. He left for a job in Buss in 1993, eventually moving up to a top management post.
In addition to running Coperion's compounding machinery division, Simon is executive vice president of Coperion Corp. The chief financial officer is Dieter Ohl.