The three years since caps and closures maker Mauer AG opened its first North American manufacturing operation in Hebron, Ky., have been productive ones for the firm.
The 40,000-square-foot Mauer USA plant, which employs 20 making injection molded polypropylene stand-up caps and dispensing closures for the medical and personal-care industries, has grown to include nine KraussMaffei molding machines with six more to be installed this year.
Our sales activity has increased tenfold in the last 14 months. Tremendous growth. We're very fortunate in that we've been able to increase our sales every month going back to May or June [of 2009], operations Vice President Jim Rivard said in a May 3 phone interview.
The plant which cost about $14 million to build and equip opened in 2007 on 14 acres near Cincinnati with plans to employ 100 and house 23 presses. It originally was under the tutelage of Ben Nejad, former president and managing director of Mauer USA, and received tax incentives from the state of Kentucky.
Nejad left the company in mid-2008, Rivard said, at about the time parent company Mauer AG of Ubstadt-Weiher, Germany, merged with closures maker Kutterer Kunststofftechnik of Karlsruhe, Germany, to form Kutterer Mauer AG, based in Karlsruhe.
The combination of the customer bases of those two companies and the relationships that they developed in Europe have been used to springboard this company in its relationships in the U.S., Rivard said.
Kutterer Mauer operates three plants in Germany (in Karlsruhe, Ubstadt-Weiher and Drei Gleichen); a facility in Trzebiel, Poland; and the one in northern Kentucky.
Since October 2009, Mauer USA has purchased eight CX-series all-hydraulic, twin-platen injection molding machines with turnkey automation from KraussMaffei Corp., the Florence, Ky.-based U.S. division of Munich, German–based KraussMaffei AG, officials from Mauer and KraussMaffei said.
Two 160-ton molding machines were delivered in November. Two 160-ton machines are being delivered this month, with two 160-ton and two 200-ton presses to be delivered in October, Rivard said.
The new machines are joining five 160-ton and two 300-ton CX presses that originally were installed in the plant.
The new machinery orders totaled about $2.2 million, officials with both companies said.
[Mauer USA has] had some good growth. They've really been hitting a good stride, gaining customers and production, said Paul Caprio, president of KraussMaffei Corp.
He said overall, machinery sales are up dramatically in the first six months of his company's fiscal year, after several months of economic downturn.
The total business in injection, extrusion and polyurethane in the [U.S.] is literally 300 percent more than it was a year ago. I think that says it all, he said.
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