The Erie Times-News has a pretty good story about GE Plastics being for sale. The story quotes local plastics processors and John Beaumont, who heads the plastics engineering technology program at Penn State Behrend. The processors, including Dennis Prischak of Plastek Industries Inc. and Hoop Roche from Erie Plastics Corp., delivered an accurate but hopeful message: the plastics industry is under a lot of competitive pressure, with excess capacity and low profit margins, but there are some nice success stories, too. I think Prischak, Beaumont and Roche did a great job putting the story into the proper perspective.
Roche and Prischak are aiming to ride out the storm and, for the most part that plan seems to be working. Prischak said he's always looking for ways to add employees. Roche said his company has 500 local employees and continues to replace those who leave. That hiring represents an act of faith or at least confidence at a time when this and other industries seem to be moving elsewhere. Roche said statistics show 50,000 to 60,000 molding presses are being sold each year in China, compared with 4,000 or less in the United States.Hoop, by the way, is a fellow plastics blogger. I visit his page regularly, and consider it worthwhile.