Sonopress plans to add replication lines
LOUISVILLE, KY. - Sonopress LLC plans in 2006 to add replication lines, including injection molding capability, at a new Louisville facility.
The 260,000-square-foot manufacturing operation opened July 18 and, initially, is packaging optical-media discs, mostly for computer games. About 45 were employed at start-up.
Sonopress has daily capacity to replicate more than 1.1 million compact discs on 58 lines and 575,000 DVDs on 26 lines at production facilities in Weaverville, N.C., and Duncan, S.C.
As for next year's replication capability in Louisville, ``the number of lines will be defined in the later part of 2005,'' said Per Save, Sonopress senior vice president of sales and marketing.
For the Louisville site, Gima SpA of Bologna, Italy, modified its base Piccola model 899 assembly machine and created a line-integrated disc collation system.
Each of two automated Gima lines can assemble Stackpak packages with a title page, up to three booklets and up to six discs, said Chuck Prather, director of Sonopress operations in Louisville. Nexpak Corp. of Uniontown, Ohio, manufactures the rigid plastic Stackpak cases with a hub design.
Through a joint venture, Coral Graphic Services set up in-house printing and bindery operations in Louisville to create materials for inclusion in the packages.
Coral and Sonopress are sister units in Bertelsmann AG's Arvato media services division.
Together, Sonopress and Coral invested an initial $24 million for land, construction and equipment at the Louisville site.
Webster Plastics Inc. garners AME award
FAIRPORT, N.Y. - The Association for Manufacturing Excellence has given custom injection molder Webster Plastics Inc. of Fairport its first award for, what else, excellence in manufacturing.
``These things are typically won by bigger companies, so it feels reinforcing to win it as a smaller company,'' said Alan Gross, Webster's director of operations. Webster employs 150.
Gross said Webster won the award because it is a ``bottom-up, people-driven company.''
Like ``synergistic'' and ``multitasking,'' ``people-driven'' is becoming an overly used business platitude, but Webster Plastics really backs it up by eliminating middle management. ``There's no management here except at the executive level,'' Gross said.
Webster has also won three ``Innovations in Plastics'' awards from the Society of Plastics Engineers, and a Best Plant award from IndustryWeek magazine.
Webster Plastics is a unit of Parker Hannifin Corp.
Rascal receives loan for APP, AMP units
MEADVILLE, PA. - Rascal Holdings LLC, which owns Advantage Precision Plastics Inc. and Advantage Mold and Design, has received a Pennsylvania Industry Development Authority loan to buy a larger plant, said APP President Ted Styborski Jr.
APP, a custom injection molder, and toolmaker AMP are based at the same 5,600-square-foot site in Vernon Township, Pa., near Meadville. They will move to a 15,000-square-foot plant in Vernon Township, Styborski said in an Aug. 8 telephone interview.
The Meadville Area Industrial Commission offered the companies a $243,493 loan through the state's Economic Progress Alliance.
``PIDAs can only be used for land and building: real estate, expansion, but not equipment,'' said Krista Ikirt, director of program services and administration for the commission.
APP and AMP will add eight jobs to their current workforce of 11. Some employees work for both companies. APP will buy three injection presses and some tooling equipment for the new plant, according to secretary-treasurer Karen Styborski.
Tesa training center opens in Michigan
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Tesa Tape Inc. of Charlotte has opened a training center in its Sparta, Mich. manufacturing site. The center will teach customers and employees about the tape market and Tesa products.
No employees will be hired to staff the center. ``Our teachers are existing application engineers, market managers, and other people already with the company,'' said Harald Kehler, a knowledge center representative.
Sparta was selected as the center's location ``because it's closest to out biggest customers, the automotive [companies],'' said Kehler.
Tesa is a subsidiary of Tesa AG, headquartered in Hamburg, Germany.