The new owners of the former Venture Holdings Co. LLC want to take advantage of the current turmoil in the auto plastics supply industry by bringing in a new leader with a reputation in lean manufacturing.
With Jerry Mosingo as chief executive officer and president, injection molder New Venture Holdings LLC is looking to position itself as a strong alternative that is in business for the long run.
``If you're looking to establish yourself as an operations place, then Jerry Mosingo is the right guy,'' said Jeff Mengel, a partner with consulting group Plante & Moran PLLC in Southfield, Mich. ``He's well-respected from a manufacturing perspective, and if customers can see that New Venture has the capabilities to deliver, that is going to help.''
Mosingo is a former president and CEO of Collins & Aikman Corp., which built itself up to a plastics powerhouse with nearly $4 billion in global sales by buying Textron Automotive Co. Inc.'s trim unit, where Mosingo had overseen operations.
At New Venture, he and a management team that includes many other former Textron employees will face the task of creating a new identity for a business that spent two years under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
``The feedback I've been getting from the [automakers] is that they liked what was going on at the company, but we had to solidify the business,'' Mosingo said in an Aug. 31 telephone interview.
Sterling Heights, Mich.-based New Venture was created May 2 when a group of private equity investors bought the assets of the former Venture Holdings out of bankruptcy. The company - which is planning a name change soon - had nearly $1 billion in sales in 2004, but needed to convince automakers it was serious about sticking around for the long term if it wanted to secure future contracts.
Mosingo will help with that, said Kirk Aubry, chief operating officer and another former Textron executive now with New Venture.
``Effectively, we became a new company on May 2,'' Aubry said. ``We've been successful in winning a large number of opportunities and new business since we came in.''
Now that Collins & Aikman is in bankruptcy, having filed for Chapter 11 protection just two weeks after New Venture emerged, there are opportunities for New Venture to win new business.
An automaker uncertain about the future shape of C&A could opt to bring in New Venture on future contracts. It already has booked $30 million in new business since May.
Mosingo estimates that Venture may have up to 50 percent available capacity in an operation that takes in 6,000 employees and 28 facilities in the United States, France and the Czech Republic.
When the Textron unit still existed, Mosingo and his team had a good reputation in lean manufacturing and delivery. Its plants routinely made it onto the list of the top facilities in North America as ranked by Industry Week magazine.
Mengel said Mosingo arrives amid extensive turmoil in the industry, lagging sales by North American-based automakers, and New Venture lacks the global footprint of some of its competitors.
The company also is continuing to reshape its holdings following its long period in bankruptcy, Aubry said, although he noted the Venture employees did well under a lot of pressure during that time.
``Some of the plants and equipment were not cared for as Jerry and I would have liked to have seen them,'' he said. ``We're going to be getting Jerry out into the plants.''
``The key is to deliver,'' Mosingo said.