Mattec Corp. has made its first installation in China, at a die-casting company in Yangzhou, and it also has a contract with an injection molder in Shanghai.
The Loveland, Ohio-based company, which makes production-monitoring and shop-floor-control products, is tackling the market in China with help from CMS Software Inc., a Toronto-based supplier of enterprise resource planning systems that bought Mattec last year.
CMS has an office in Shanghai with about a dozen employees, and now some of them are dedicated to representing Mattec, according to Mattec President Mick Thiel.
Thiel said manufacturers in China know they can't compete globally just based on lower worker wages - they need to be just as efficient as their counterparts around the world.
``They need technology, productivity, efficiency, overall equipment effectiveness - everything that companies here need,'' Thiel said in an interview at the Plastics Encounter trade show, held May 8-10 in Cincinnati.
The recent sale was for Mattec's Windows-based ProHelp EPM software, which monitors every cycle of every machine in a plant and alerts users to changes in processing conditions before bad parts are produced.
Its first customer was Sensus-Rongtai Precision Die Casting (Yangzhou) Co. Ltd., a joint venture making auto and motorcycle parts. The venture is owned by Raleigh, N.C.-based Sensus Metering Systems Inc. and Yangzhou Runlin Investment Co. Ltd. The second customer will be Southco Manufacturing and Technology (Shanghai) Co. Ltd., which makes automotive latches, and is part of Southco Inc. of Concordville, Pa.
Both customers have North American connections, but Thiel stressed that sales to the China operations were handled by Mattec's Shanghai office.
``I think China as a marketplace is going to be important to every U.S. manufacturer,'' Thiel said.