East Coast Plastics adds 610-ton press
FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. - East Coast Plastics Inc. recently expanded its big-press capacity by installing a 610-ton Sandretto machine at its Fort Lauderdale facility.
The press was the latest injection press East Coast installed as part of a $2 million molding capacity expansion. During the past 15 months East Coast bought 11 other Sandretto presses, with clamping forces of 30-425 tons. Some were replacement presses and now East Coast has 26 presses with clamping forces of up to 650 tons.
East Coast general manager Dick Nickles said his firm is experiencing moderate sales growth despite a tough business environment. Loyal customers and new business spurred the company to invest in the extra molding capacity. The firm's markets include electronics, aerospace, consumer and medical. It logged sales of $8 million last year.
East Coast operates a 75,000-square-foot plant in Fort Lauderdale. It offers tool building, assembly and secondary operations under the same roof as its custom molding business. Double ``B'' Tool & Die Co. is the name of the toolmaking operation. It is owned by Bill Sullivan, while East Coast's owner and president is Bob Trank.
Integrated packaging gets U.S. distributor
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - Melbourne-based Integrated Packaging Pty. Ltd. has gained U.S. distribution for its Altex film technology, which stretches film to make it thinner but stronger.
Nik Giovanakis, manager of research and development applications, would not disclose the licensee or its U.S. markets.
Giovanakis said the Altex process can give a 20-micron film 180 percent more tensile strength than a 40-micron film that it would replace. The improved properties are derived from how the film is oriented, Giovanakis said, but he would not give details.
Integrated Packaging invested A$20 million (US$10.35 million) to develop the technology, he said. Customers in Europe are using Altex-thinned film in agricultural applications.
Mass. consortium offers apprenticeship
PITTSFIELD, MASS. - The Berkshire Plastics Network is joining with the Massachusetts Department of Labor to offer an apprenticeship program for mold makers beginning in September.
The program, which started in 1985, combines 300 hours of classroom work with 8,000 hours of on-the-job training overseen by the state to help participants obtain journeyman certificates. During its 15-year span, the Berkshire program has produced 101 graduates.
The Pittsfield-based Berkshire Plastics Network is a consortium of independently owned plastic companies in the Berkshire area of Massachusetts. BPN members account for more than 2,000 employees and a $160 million local industry.
MacPlas IPO funds to boost capacity
DAVAO, PHILIPPINES - Macondray Plastics Inc. of Davao has generated 80 million Philippine pesos ($1.6 million) through an initial public offering.
Proceeds will be used to expand capacity and create new products, said Chairman Martin P. Lorenzo.
The company started as a unit of Macondray & Co. Inc. in 1990, supplying plastic packaging materials for the agricultural producers.
The company, known as MacPlas, decided to launch an IPO because the local market for plastic agricultural packaging is growing quickly, and the company needed more capacity.
Despite the weak Philippine economy, MacPlas reported a 28.5 percent increase in 2000 profit to 28 million pesos ($560,000) during the previous year. MacPlas has six blown-film extruders and a flexographic printing machine.
President and Chief Executive Officer Jose A. Castro Jr. said the company plans to boost blown film capacity by 40 percent, or nearly 2 million pounds annually.