Adding new equipment is becoming a yearly habit for Chemtech Plastics Inc., which has spent $2 million on machinery in the past 20 months.
The custom injection molder added three injection molding machines and a pad printer this year and plans to add horizontal and rotary molding machines in the next three months. The Elgin, Ill.-based company has added a total of seven molding machines and two pad printers since January 2003.
``We're not lucky, we're not greedy, but very fortunate and doing something right,'' said Ragnar Korthase, president and chief executive officer, in an Aug. 26 telephone interview.
The company has 125 employees at one 70,000-square-foot facility in Elgin. It has 28 presses, from 28-400 tons of clamping force. Chemtech recently passed a TS-16949:2000 quality audit and is ISO 9001 certified.
Korthase said that company has added 12 employees this year, but at the same time is adding more automation and services. He started Chemtech in 1982.
About half of the business is automotive work, according to Mike Prevezianos, sales and marketing manager. He said that the company does a lot of interior work for the major carmakers. It does such things as chrome-look buttons, logos and turn signals, as well as housings for electrical items and transmission shifters. The trend is toward pad printing of graphics on parts and giving them a look not plastic, he said.
Prevezianos said that areas that the company is developing are in two-shot multimaterial molding and in-mold decoration.
Sales at the company were up 32 percent to $15.5 million in 2003 and are on pace to exceed that amount by about 25 percent this year, he said.