Moll Industries Inc. has added seven injection presses - including two new Negri Bossi machines with 1,100 tons of clamping force - at its plant in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico.
In other news, Moll has closed its engineering office in Evansville, Ind., and moved the staff into Whirlpool Corp. plants.
Whirlpool - Moll's biggest customer - has a new factory making side-by-side refrigerators in Ramos Arizpe. Moll opened its 135,000-square-foot plant there earlier this year.
Joe Pack, Moll's vice president of sales and marketing, declined to identify the plant's customers or jobs. ``We didn't buy them for an exact customer,'' he said.
Pack said the company is winning business in the appliance and Tier II automotive markets in central Mexico. Moll needs to increase its molding capacity in the range of 400-1,500 tons.
``Our operation in Ramos has lots of opportunities in that [tonnage] range,'' he said.
Negri Bossi's Vector series of presses - hydraulic machines with electric screw drives - transitions Moll from standard hydraulic machines into hybrid equipment.
Liam Burns, general manager of Negri Bossi USA Inc. in Newark, Del., said the machinery maker is scheduled to deliver the presses to Ramos Arizpe in October.
Pack said Moll has added five other presses to the factory in the past two months. Moll bought two used, 725-ton machines and moved three 110-ton presses from its closed-down plant in Tucson, Ariz.
Pack declined to say how many injection presses Moll now runs at Ramos Arizpe. But he said the firm has identified Mexico for expansion. ``We're continuing to do what we said we'd do,'' he said.
Meanwhile, Pack confirmed Moll shut its Evansville engineering office, but said there were no layoffs. The small operation was dedicated to Whirlpool. Of the three engineers there, two now will work at Whirlpool plants, and one will work from home, he said.
``It was strictly a matter of better support to our customers, to have them in the plants, rather than in a central facility,'' Pack said.