Blow Molded Products Inc. of Riverside, Calif., will break ground in May on a second manufacturing site in Southern California.
The custom processor is investing about $5 million to acquire 2 acres and construct a 40,000-square-foot facility for its injection molding division by the end of the year. The site's location has not been disclosed.
``We do not have the physical space'' in the existing facility, said Larry Harden, BMP owner and president. The current site has about 20,000 square feet for manufacturing, and BMP leases 15,000 square feet for warehousing.
``Injection molding is standing on its own two legs, and the division makes money now,'' he said.
BMP added an all-electric, 75-ton Milacron press in January and replaced some older units. The firm now operates 14 presses with 35-300 tons of clamping force. The new location will allow for larger presses, perhaps 500-900 tons.
BMP runs nine blow molding machines with shot sizes up to 15 pounds and projects it will invest about $150,000 for blow molding equipment this year.
The firm continues to develop lines of proprietary plastic cases. Demand from resellers, distributors, second-tier manufacturers and original equipment manufacturers drives the sales growth for standard and customized lines. BMP is introducing more case sizes and designs, mostly using tools BMP builds in-house.
BMP has added specialized assembly and packaging functions to provide customized, ready-to-use cases for tools, hand-held electronics, product samples and other applications.
The firm employs 35-60.
The quarter ended March 31 was the company's best ever, partly because of some 2006 backlog. ``We did not have release dates,'' Harden said. ``All of a sudden, everyone wanted parts.''
Steve Campanella joined BMP as director of sales and marketing in January, and BMP ``picked up good accounts'' within its niche of short runs of complex containers, Harden said.
The blow molding division accounted for 2006 sales of $3.8 million, and injection molding had $2.8 million including toolmaking. The divisions had 2005 sales of $4.2 million and $2.9 million, respectively.
Harden attributed the lower 2006 sales to California's difficult business environment, foreign and domestic competition, electricity charges, workers' compensation premiums and an increased minimum wage rate, ``one of the highest.''