Rick Martz is using his severance pay to get back into the business of housewares and office products, items like plastic shelving and patio tables.
The former president of Stylette Inc. of Oakdale, Pa., has begun Oak Engineered Products Inc. in a portion of the former Stylette facility in Oakdale.
``The product lines, we know, are solid,'' Martz said in a Feb. 24 telephone interview. ``We know the customer base. The people that I have are former Stylette people.
``This is a tough time in the plastics industry to go into business when so many are going out. But I see opportunity, with the industry in such dire straits.''
He commented, for instance, that it's more cost effective for certain products to be made stateside rather than shipped from overseas producers.
Martz expects to begin molding the products in-house by April with roughly 20 employees after outsourcing the manufacturing since October.
Former Stylette parent company Alco Industries Inc. held an auction the week of Feb. 13, to sell injection molding machines that were damaged during a 2004 flood. Once that equipment is removed, Martz said Oak Engineered Products can begin its own manufacturing. He purchased a number of product lines and their molds from Alco and also from Doskocil Manufacturing Co. Inc. of Arlington, Texas.
Doskocil in 2005 acquired Stylette's molds, inventory, accounts receivable and intellectual property. Doskocil mainly is focused on pet products. Doskocil consolidated the assets into its Texas production facility.
Stylette was founded in 1952 but stopped producing in Oakdale after that 2004 flood.