British jewel-box manufacturer Coral Products plc is responding to a rapid rise in demand for digital versatile disc cases by expanding its injection molding capacity.
With sales of DVD cases up by around 70 percent in the past 12 months, Haydock, England-based Coral boosted output last year by installing a faster, 660-ton Krauss-Maffei press equipped with an eight-cavity mold, compared to Coral's older six-cavity machines.
Now Coral is preparing to install two more big Krauss-Maffei lines. The first is being installed now, the second is scheduled for delivery in September. The additions, part of a £2 million ($3 million) capital spending plan, will double Coral's DVD jewel-box capacity.
DVD cases now account for 12 percent of Coral's annual sales. The company claims to be gaining market share as custom molders in the United Kingdom drop out of the jewel-box business.
``A lot of suppliers have packed up on the video side,'' said David Shalom, finance director.
``We have further improved the design of our box ... and recently introduced a double DVD box which we believe offers the cheapest solution on the market for use on automated packing lines,'' said Managing Director Warren Ferster.
Coral, which employs about 140 at its single Haydock plant, expects to operate a total of 30 injection molding machines when it adds the new lines.
On the flip side, sales of CD jewel boxes have dropped, and that part of the company's business is running at between 50-75 percent of capacity, Shalom said.
Coral recently won a contract to supply a range of polypropylene photo boxes from Kodak. The boxes will be used for the presentation and storage of Kodak customers' developed photographs in place of paper envelopes.
The molder is using some of its CD injection presses to handle the contract.
Coral recently reported annual pretax profit of £1.2 million ($1.86 million), down 40 percent from a year earlier. Sales were down 11 percent to £16 million ($25 million).
The company blamed poor demand for CD boxes and reduced selling prices due to lower resin costs.