Mastip US site assembling hot runners
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND Hot-runner supplier Mastip Inc., part of New Zealand-based Mastip Technology Ltd., has started U.S. assembly of hot halves at its facility in Slinger, Wis.
David Shirley, North American general manager, said the firm is sourcing the plates from U.S. suppliers. The hot-runner components come from Mastip headquarters in Auckland.
We now have the capacity to assemble hot halves here. What we're doing is marrying together the components from New Zealand with the plates coming from here, Shirley said.
Mastip's U.S. operation had been importing the completed hot halves, which were often shipped by air freight. Each hot half comes to the customer pre-assembled.
[U.S. assembly] has definitely given us the capacity to hold those shorter deliveries that the industry requires. It also allows us to keep costs down, Shirley said. The company also now can refurbish large hot-runner systems.
To accommodate the assembly in Slinger, Mastip has added heavy lifting equipment and precision measuring instruments for quality control.
Mastip Technology started direct sales to the U.S. in 2004. and opened the 2,800-square-foot building in Slinger in 2007. Increasing business drove the decision to begin U.S. hot-half assembly, Shirley said. In June, Mastip added a sales rep on the West Coast. In addition to hot halves, Mastip supplies hot-runner nozzles and actuators, manifolds and temperature controllers.
Conair picks VP sales: Stephen Petrakis
CRANBERRY TOWNSHIP, PA. Machinery veteran Stephen Petrakis has been named vice president of sales for the U.S. and Canada for Conair Group Inc., an auxiliary equipment manufacturer in Cranberry Township, near Pittsburgh.
Petrakis is leaving Frigel North America Inc., a maker of cooling equipment, where he was president. He starts Aug. 16 at Conair, reporting to Larry Doyle, Conair's vice president of global sales and marketing.
Petrakis has a 34-year industry career. He said the move to Conair represents something of a homecoming.
When I started as a sales rep in Chicago in 1976, Conair was one of the first companies I represented. Now it seems I've come full-circle, Petrakis said. I have had tremendous respect for Conair over the years and I look forward to contributing to its continued leadership and success.
Doyle said Petrakis will head sales efforts in Conair's largest and most important market.
Petrakis used to work at a Conair competitor, auxiliary maker ACS Group, where he was vice president of sales and marketing for its Sterling Inc. unit. In 2005, he left ACS to become director of the Society of the Plastics Industry Inc.'s Chicago office. He became president of Frigel North America in late 2006.
Robot orders rebound in North America
ANN ARBOR, MICH. Orders for industrial robots jumped 40 percent for the first half of 2010, more proof that manufacturing is rebounding from a recession-racked 2009, according to the Robotic Industries Association.
The biggest gains came from non-automotive companies, where unit orders rose 51 percent, said Jeff Burnstein, president of Ann Arbor-based RIA.
This is a very positive sign for our industry as it continues to expand into a wide range of industries, such as semiconductor, electronics and photonics, food and beverage, plastics and rubber, consumer goods and life sciences, Burnstein said. Each of these market segments posted substantial gains in the first half of 2010, while automotive orders also grew 30 percent.
The trade association tracks orders received by North American-based robotics companies.
Through June, North American companies ordered a total of 6,316 robots, valued at $411.4 million an increase of 40 percent in units and 48 percent in dollars over the first half of 2009. RIA said the increases are even larger when including orders to companies outside of North America: up 54 percent in units and 62 percent in dollars.
This year's numbers look especially strong when compared with the dismal 2009. For the entire year, North American manufacturers only ordered 9,451 robots valued at $569.2 million. But the robot sector started to stabilize in the fourth quarter.