Foley, Minn.-based custom blow molder Blow Molded Specialties Inc. shut down its Watertown, S.D., plant earlier this year, and consolidated some of the machinery into its facility in Foley.
BMS acquired the facility in the spring of 2007 from Minneapolis-based AcroTech Midwest Inc. for an undisclosed sum, and named it BMS Watertown Inc.
AcroTech was one of the few North American companies to operate a Kautex multilayer coextrusion blow molding machine, a huge unit that costs more than $5 million.
AcroTech's business was struggling in 2007, and BMS planned to turn it around, President Jeff Spethmann said Oct. 8 by phone.
But as the economy worsened, market demand shrunk for fuel tanks in the recreational vehicle market served by the Watertown facility.
The 98,000-square-foot building employed 65 and housed 22 blow molding machines, in addition to the mammoth Kautex unit.
Spethmann declined to comment on legal issues related to the Watertown building and capital equipment.
Since 1999, BMS has grown under the direction of Spethmann from $3 million to $18 million in annual sales.
Fairfield, Iowa-based Agri-Industrial Plastics Co. operates a similar Kautex multilayer blow molder. The company is in the process of installing a second Kautex unit at its 186,000-square-foot plant in Fairfield.
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