Injection molder Moll Industries Inc. is closing a plant in Costa Mesa, Calif., and transferring that work to a new plant it is setting up in Tucson, Ariz.
Dallas-based Moll acquired the California plant in February when it bought Textron's InteSys Technologies Inc. unit, which also gave it operations in Ireland and Mexico. The facility had focused on medical molding.
Moll President Ron Embree said July 22 that the 60,000-square-foot Costa Mesa plant was underused, and when company officials tried to lease out part of the facility, they got an unexpected offer from a real estate firm to buy the whole building.
Embree said Moll also was influenced by the relatively high operating costs in Costa Mesa, particularly since part of the space was sitting unused.
``Tucson is more manufacturing-friendly than Southern California,'' Embree said. ``Expenses are less, utilities are less, property values are less and workers' compensation is less.''
All 30 presses in Costa Mesa will move, and Embree said he thinks the company will be able to retain most of the plant's customers.
All 35 workers in Costa Mesa have been offered jobs at the 85,000-square-foot plant the company bought in Arizona, which has room to add more presses, he said.
The Tucson plant will cost about $3.3 million to set up, and will include a Class 100,000 clean room, he said.