Stewart Industries LLC began in 2001 as a specialist in assembling functional plastic parts for other firms in the auto industry. Now it is bringing new skills to molders as a specialist in inspections and troubleshooting.
The inspection service allows molders and other auto suppliers to focus on production, rather than devoting expensive man hours from their own staff on problem parts, said Michael Roberson, general manager of the Battle Creek, Mich.-based firm's Stewart Inspection.
``You want to put your money into an area where it'll get the best return,'' Roberson said April 14 at SAE International's World Congress in Detroit.
Stewart developed its inspection abilities in-house for its part-assembly business. When a customer asked Stewart to find and solve problems in its supply chain, the business took off.
Stewart works with 100 suppliers already, sometimes at customers' locations and sometimes off-site.
The company employs 104, but Roberson said he expects that to reach 200 by year's end as the inspection service grows.