Custom and proprietary injection molders Sapona Plastics LLC and Polymer Concepts Inc. have merged their molding operations.
The companies expect to consolidate the operations in Sapona's plant in Asheboro, N.C., by the end of August. Sapona President Dean Lail said in a telephone interview that both companies are small and they can offset overhead costs through the merger.
Sapona is continuing the molding operations with 14 injection presses with clamping forces of 100-500 tons and four brush-bristling machines in its 50,000-square-foot facility. Polymer Concepts will quit molding, but it will continue to do unspecified manufacturing in its Randleman, N.C., facility for a customer. Polymer Concepts will sell seven of its eight injection molding machines, which range from 55-350 tons.
``We are particularly pleased to add the patented Groomie rotating-head pet brush to our line of cleaning brushes,'' Lail said in an Aug. 9 news release. The brush, developed by Polymer Concepts co-owner Larry Draughn in 2005, can remove pet hair from furnishings as well as directly from pets. The line complements Sapona's extensive brush-molding business, which it bolstered last year by buying the assets of Whit Corp. of Franklinville, N.C., and consolidating them into its Asheboro location.
Sapona also has a diverse custom molding business for personal-care, consumer, construction, automotive and other markets.
Draughn and Polymer Concepts co-owner and Vice President Rickey Barker will continue as consultants with Sapona for two years.
Sapona Plastics is a joint venture between the Lail family and Sapona Manufacturing Co. Inc., a Cedar Falls, N.C., textile yarn manufacturer founded in 1836.
Sapona Plastics employs about 50 in a molding shop that runs around the clock, seven days a week. Since the continuing operation is highly automated, no Polymer Concepts operators will join Sapona Plastics, Lail said. Polymer Concepts mainly has served the battery, industrial and apparel markets.