Reaction injection molder Prototype Concepts Inc. has moved out of California.
The company, formerly based in Garden Grove, Calif., has shifted its operation to a 50,000-square-foot plant in Sparks, Nev., said President Peter Morley. The leased facility opened Dec. 1 in an industrial park in the western Nevada city, said Morley, whose family owns the company.
Prototype Concepts started looking for a new location a year ago, Morley said March 4. The company was beset by rising costs for utilities, workers' compensation insurance and taxes in the Golden State, he said. The molder is saving about $15,000 a month alone on workers' compensation after moving to Nevada, Morley said.
The automotive supplier started 17 years ago in Costa Mesa, Calif., molding polyurethane parts for the transportation industry. Today, Prototype does reaction injection molding of automotive aftermarket products, golf carts and electric vehicles, Morley said. The firm recently has shipped products to Asia and Europe for urethane bumpers and decorative exterior parts, he said.
``We're competing with our old nemesis, the Chinese,'' Morley said. ``We do a lot of automotive aftermarket products, and they're getting into it pretty heavily. We had to cut pricing back, and the only way to cut expenses was to move to a different location.''
The company moved 40 people to the Sparks facility and added 15 more workers, Morley said. With its recent growth, Prototype Concepts is looking for another 10 employees, he said. The company also moved three high-pressure RIM machines from California to the new plant, he added.
The firm also serves the medical market. It would like to rebuild its workforce to about 100 people, the number of employees it had in 2001 before Sept. 11 events led to downsizing, he said.
The firm records annual sales of about $5 million, Morley said.