Canada's Profine Molds Inc. is going international, beginning with a new base of operations in Hong Kong, and plans to expand into Latin America.
The Mississauga, Ontario-based firm will move in August into a larger home base - a new, 60,000-square-foot headquarters in nearby Oakville, Ontario. The site, which will replace two smaller facilities - will house additional research, design and engineering operations to coordinate the international expansion.
Profine opened an application and sales office in Hong Kong in June and has partnered with mold makers in Hong Kong, Taiwan and mainland China that can manufacture molds to the firm's specifications, marketing manager Wayne Stoddard said in a July 21 telephone interview.
The company had boosted its capabilities in North America to help battle the push into low-cost countries in the past, but with business continuing to require low-cost options and international exposure, Profine had to respond, Stoddard said.
Molders are expanding into international markets themselves and want to work with trusted toolmakers, he said. At the same time, companies in North America continue to be pressed to find less-expensive sources.
``The customers are finding the same challenges as we are,'' he said. ``They need to figure out who they are going to play with in these global markets. They need someone who can facilitate and support their growth.''
Profine President Manuel Gomes met with qualified toolmakers in Asia and will do the same in Mexico and Brazil by 2007.
``As long as you've got the right people in place in any one of these areas, you can fabricate there,'' he said.