SMC Ltd., a global contract manufacturer of medical and pharmaceutical devices, will open its second plant in San Jose, Costa Rica and its 10th worldwide at the end of March or early April.
The initial size of the plant will be 20,000 square feet the same as the Somerset, Wis.-based company's other Costa Rica plant. But SMC said it already has plans for a 20,000-square-foot expansion, plus an option for another 50,000-square-foot addition.
This is a very central location for our customers who are requesting global manufacturing locations, said Bob Stoesser, vice president and general manager for western and Central America.
This plant will accommodate our medical-device assembly customers in Costa Rica, provide a low-cost manufacturing option for our U.S. customer base, and do the same things we do in our other plants, such as molding, assembly, testing, sterilization, packaging and supply-chain management, he said.
The plant will start with eight injection molding presses ranging from 50-300 tons of clamping force, and two Class 100,000 clean rooms that can be upgraded, if necessary to Class 10,000, he said.
We have a couple of lines that we have identified to move down [to the Costa Rican plant] and will have an initial workforce of 50 that we will expand fairly quickly to 100, Stoesser said. The drivers for the expansion were across-the-board growth and the desire of our customers for us to have a logistical presence in different countries and regions.
Both Costa Rican plants are significantly smaller than SMC's 80,000-square-foot plants in Amery and Somerset, Wis.; its 77,000-square-foot plant in Sterling, Mass.; its 70,000-square-foot plant in Leominster, Mass.; and its 62,000-square-foot plant in Santa Rosa, Calif.
SMC also has a plant in Bangalore, India, and a design facility in Hudson, Ohio.