Injection molder Bruce Plastics Inc. plans to consolidate its operations in Anderson County near Anderson, S.C., relocating from Pittsburgh.
Bruce Plastics Chief Executive Officer Dhiren Shah said his firm is attracted by rapid growth in the Southeast. In contrast, Bruce Plastics' Pittsburgh head-office operation faces sluggish local markets.
``There is no light industry in [the Pittsburgh] area,'' Shah said in a recent telephone interview. ``We're fighting a losing battle all the time.''
Bruce Plastics bought privately held Hitech Molding & Tooling in an Anderson County industrial park last fall. It now is moving operations there from Pittsburgh and expects to complete the relocation by June 30, Shah said.
``We are using the opportunity to go where the business is,'' Shah said. Bruce Plastics is investing about $6 million to expand the former Hitech plant by 50,000 square feet and add more equipment.
The company has proprietary product lines including feet and bumpers for light appliances, bindings, and case handles and accessories. It exports a significant portion of such goods to Europe, Latin America and even China, according to Shah. The other half of its business is custom molding for automotive and other industries. When the move is complete, Shah said the Anderson County plant will contain 45 injection presses. Bruce Plastics has been based in Pittsburgh since 1952.
Shah estimated Bruce Plastics' sales this year should reach $18 million to $25 million, or about double sales prior to the acquisition and relocation. Employment peaked at 77 in Pittsburgh but should reach 220 this year in Anderson County after the move. Bruce Plastics is owned by Ashdown Corp. of Pittsburgh.