In response to a growing need for maintaining and refurbishing China-based equipment, Extrusion Dies Industries LLC has opened a wholly owned subsidiary in Shanghai.
EDI Precision Dies (Shanghai) Co. Ltd. plans to offer comprehensive refurbishing services for tooling. EDI officials announced the move at the Chinaplas trade show, held May 21-24 in Guangzhou.
``This is our first China venture,'' said Christopher Curtin, executive vice president of sales and marketing for Chippewa Falls, Wis.-based EDI. ``We already have a large base of installed tools in China.''
Growing demand for die maintenance in China took the company by surprise, said Jason Yin, new general manager of the 11,000-square-foot Shanghai plant.
``Sometimes we sell to international companies who build a line and then send it to China,'' he said at Chinaplas. ``We don't really know how many customers we have in China.''
Yin has worked with EDI for two years as a consultant and coordinator of the project to create the Shanghai facility. In the plant's initial phase, he will manage a team of 10 employees.
``By the end of the year we expect to increase that to 20,'' he said.
With the growing need for refurbished dies, EDI realized if it did not provide the service, someone else would, Curtin said.
``Someone can take our dies and re-create them - it's all in the geometry,'' Curtin said of the equipment. ``They can't scale it, but they can re-create it.''
The Shanghai plant will have the capacity to replate and grind equipment, as well as modify it for a different use. Long term, the company hopes to see the plant making dies as well as refurbishing them, Curtin said.
For now, however, Yin said he expects the factory to be busy. The company will be able to refurbish dies from other U.S.-based manufacturers and may provide refurbishing services for China's domestically produced equipment as well.
``We aren't always sure of the quality of the original material, so we haven't made a decision whether to accept domestic equipment or not,'' he said.