GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. (Oct. 27, 4:30 p.m. ET) — Two medical molders are expanding in Grand Rapids, with Medbio Inc. moving into a larger facility and Atek Medical opening a second site for its packaging operations.
Both companies received tax breaks from the Cascade Township Board of Trustees Oct. 26 to help finance the work.
Medbio, a 7-year-old injection molding firm, increased its manufacturing space by 55 percent with its new facility, said John Woodhouse, sales and marketing manager, in an Oct. 27 telephone interview. The company also added three new injection presses and now has 14 machines ranging from 17 to 165 tons of clamping force.
The company's main production is in a Class 100,000 clean room, with four separate Class 10,000 manufacturing zones within that room, including a unit with a 44-ton Arburg press for implantable medical parts.
Medbio now has 60 employees. In addition to larger, custom-built manufacturing space, the new location also places the firm closer to the airport and main shipping lines, with easier access than its previous location near downtown Grand Rapids, Woodhouse said.
Atek, with headquarters in Minneapolis, Minn., is creating a “packaging center of excellence” at its new 85,000-square-foot Grand Rapids location and is dedicating much of the floor space to its specialized barrier packaging operations, said David Mabie, vice president of business development.
The site will also house a lean manufacturing “3P” line — named for “production, preparation and process” — which provides room for a complete mock up of a manufacturing line to fine tune plant layouts before production begins, he said.
The new space will help refine lean manufacturing not only for Grand Rapids, but for other Atek sites, including another expansion for the company in San Jose, Costa Rica.
Atek will open its second molding facility in Costa Rica later this year, with full production at the 80,000-square-foot site in 2012, Mabie said. The plant will help meet increased demand for clean room production in the region.