Engel rebounds to pre-recession level
YORK, PA. — Injection press maker Engel Holding GmbH has rebounded nearly to its pre-recession sales levels, it said July 19.
Sales from shipments during fiscal 2011 were $881 million, up nearly 72 percent from 2010. Sales at the Schwertberg, Austria-based company in 2009, before the recession, were $908 million.
“As far as I'm concerned, we are back to our 2009 level, and more important, we are looking forward confidently,” said Mark Sankovitch, president of York-based Engel Machinery Inc., in a news release. “Our global revenue forecast for fiscal 2012, which ends March 31, 2012, is double-digit growth ... as long as market conditions remain stable.” Engel credited its 2011 success to good results in all of the company's key markets and global regions, including North America.
Sankovitch said the medical and packaging markets saw the strongest growth in North America in 2011. This year, those markets are joined by significant growth in the automotive sector.
Engel is seeing some sales in replacing older molding machines with clamping forces of 1,000-plus tons. In the medical sector, Engel's all-electric technology is generating interest.
Economy, financing help Octex expand
SARASOTA, FLA. — Injection molder Octex LLC is finalizing plans to boost its staff and nearly double its manufacturing space.
The Sarasota firm plans to add 26,000 square feet to its 33,000-square-foot business, said spokesman Daniel Mallon in a July 18 telephone interview. Octex also has added 13 workers this year to its previous staff of 61 and said it eventually could have another 80 people on staff. The company does molding and mold making, producing parts for the electronics, medical and consumer-products industries. It has 22 presses and will add six with the expansion, with room to double its existing fleet eventually.
Business has picked up for Octex and its customers as the economy has revived, Mallon said. He credited assistance from the company's bank, BB&T Corp., and Sarasota County government and economic development officials.
Vt. car-panel maker building in Mich.
BENNINGTON, VT. — Plasan Carbon Composites Inc. will build an $18 million manufacturing center in Walker, Mich., adding to already-announced plans for a technical center in the state.
Plasan, based in Bennington, announced plans in December for a $3.2 million customer and technical development center in Wixom, Mich. The Michigan Economic Growth Authority said in a July 19 news release that the company now has the opportunity to bring manufacturing to the region as well.
The new facility in Walker, near Grand Rapids, Mich., will employ about 200 making Class A-surface body panels from carbon fiber.
Plasan previously qualified for tax breaks from the state for its technical center, and the state group extended that credit to cover both sites, worth $4.7 million over five years.
The company makes carbon fiber for some models of the Chevrolet Corvette and also produced composite panels for the Dodge Viper as well as other specialty vehicles.
Once-bankrupt Ameriform back in black
MUSKEGON, MICH. — Thermoformer and sheet extruder Ameriform Inc. made it through restructuring and now is about to invest $2 million in new equipment and an expansion.
The Muskegon City Commission approved a tax break for the company's planned improvements, which include an expected 15 new jobs. Two other manufacturing companies owned by members of the Harris family use sheet supplied by Ameriform: KL Industries Inc., a supplier of paddle boats and outdoor equipment, and Five Peaks Technologies LLC, which makes portable toilets.
President Dan Harris told the Muskegon Chronicle that the firm is back on solid footing and seeing record growth.
Omaha's Connectivity Solutions closes
OMAHA, NEB. — The auctioneer's gavel has marked the final days of Connectivity Solutions Manufacturing.
GoIndustry DoveBid conducted an auction last week to sell everything, including more than 50 injection molding machines, at the sprawling former Western Electric factory in Omaha.
The 1.5 million-square-foot complex made electronic panels, plastic connectors and cable systems.