Amtec mulls Mexico border operations
ROCKFORD, ILL. - Amtec Molded Products of Rockford may launch Mexican border operations, urged on by automotive customers.
``We are looking at expanding within a year or two,'' Mark Binder, general manager, said by telephone, adding that the plan currently is in the concept and site-selection phase.
Amtec employs 58, operates 25 presses of 28-500 tons and occupies 50,000 square feet. The firm makes under-the-hood parts, including new products for upcoming automotive models and sensor systems for the environmental industry. For the fiscal year ended May 26, Amtec had sales of $5.2 million.
``We have not felt effects of the [economic] slowdown,'' Binder said. ``The markets we are in and the parts we are making did not get affected as much as some.''
The firm's parent is machining company Amtec Precision Products Inc. of Elgin, Ill. Amtec Precision acquired the Rockford custom molder in 1998, when it was known as Allied Molded Products Inc. Amtec Precision had sales last year of $93 million.
SimRidge relocates presses to Ariz. site
NEW BRAUNFELS, TEXAS - Custom injection molder SimRidge Technologies began operating two 700-ton, microprocessor-controlled presses at its Tempe, Ariz., plant, in part to mold roofing products for the construction industry.
``The presses are for a specific customer's requirements, but will have some time available for other work,'' said Hollis Wooldridge, vice president and general manager of the privately held firm. SimRidge moved the presses to Tempe from a Texas facility. Now, the Tempe site operates 25 injection presses.
New Braunfels-based SimRidge had 2001 sales of about $28 million from operations in Tempe, New Braunfels and Sanford, N.C.
Braitrim optimistic despite slow debut
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - London-based Braitrim Holdings Ltd. is Spotless Ltd.'s gateway to a global presence in clothing handling and packaging systems, even though Braitrim had a poor year in 2001, said Brian Blythe, managing director of Melbourne-based Spotless.
``Recession conditions contributed to a poor maiden year for Braitrim, but did not diminish its forward outlook as a strong midterm growth opportunity for Spotless,'' he said.
Braitrim's sales for the six months ended Dec. 31 were below expectations. Its established product ranges and new sales programs had less-than-anticipated support from retailers. Braitrim was expected to produce ``a most unsatisfactory result for 2002 on a stand-alone basis,'' Blythe said.
Spotless acquired Braitrim Holdings last year to complement its Plasti-form polypropylene garment-hanger business. Blythe said sales for Plasti-form and Braitrim were affected by soft market conditions caused by heavy discounting. While 2001 ended positively in the United States, European markets still lagged.
Bemis lighting system to provide savings
SHEBOYGAN FALLS, WIS. - Custom and proprietary injection molder Bemis Manufacturing Co. expects to save about $317,000 per year in electrical costs with a new lighting system.
Bemis is installing high-efficiency fluorescent lamps supplied by Orion Lighting & Energy Services to replace halide lamps, said Bemis facilities manager Brian Henne. The project, begun in mid-2001, will be complete in late March, Henne predicted.
In addition to energy savings, the Orion's Illuminator fixtures system is a hit with employees because it provides brighter and more uniform lighting, Henne said. Halide lights emit beams that tend to cause shadows in warehousing and other areas with multitier structures.
Orion is installing its system throughout Bemis' 2 million-square-foot Sheboygan Falls production complex for an undisclosed price. The project will lead to 50 percent lighting energy savings, cutting Bemis' electricity usage at the site by 6.3 million kilowatt hours annually.
Orion of Plymouth, Wis., also touts its system as a way for regions to delay or avoid building new electricity-generating plants.