Two Missouri rotomolders have merged to tackle custom molding and proprietary product lines in the face of rising resin prices and foreign competition.
Molding Co. of Farmington, Mo., and Kitterman Plastics of Kansas City, Mo., became one company June 1, said Carl Dobrzeniecki, president of the new firm, in a June 15 telephone interview.
``The surviving entity is the Molding Co.,'' Dobrzeniecki said. ``We are looking at a new name of the company and we're also rebranding all the product lines for the first time.''
Together, the firms had 2004 sales of more than $8 million, with roughly 75 employees.
The newly formed company will maintain a corporate office in Kansas City, but all manufacturing - including vacuum forming and injection molding - will be consolidated into Molding Co.'s 85,000-square-foot site in Farmington. The headquarters location has not been determined.
Kitterman's 60,000-square-foot site in Kansas City, which it owns, will not be divested immediately. The company will continue to use it for the foreseeable future, officials said. The combined management teams will stay in place.
Brad Robertson, who was Kitterman president, now is chief executive officer of the new firm. He and Dobrzeniecki have discussed for years the possibility of merging.
``It was always something that was always stuck way in the back of our minds,'' said Dobrzeniecki, whose industry history includes tenure with Little Tikes Co. of Hudson, Ohio, and a stint as president of the Association of Rotational Molders International.
``We have a lot of capacity, so I've been really trying to bring more volume in here,'' he said.
Robertson's firm has been manufacturing plastics since 1955; Dobrzeniecki founded Molding Co. in 1988.
``This is an exceptional combination, as it brings together each company's respective heritage in the molding industry and deep-seated histories with specific account bases,'' Robertson said in a June 13 news release.
Kitterman's proprietary lines include one for the airline industry and one for convenience stores and service stations. The new firm will expand products for the playground market. It will not lose its focus on custom molding, Dobrzeniecki said.
``The custom molding has always been and will be a big philosophy going forward,'' Dobrzeniecki said.