National Molding LLC is venturing into medical molding with the purchase of Ven-Tel Plastics Corp. in Largo, Fla.
“Medical is not something you can just put in the capability and put up a sign,” said Tom Linton, president and CEO of Miami Lakes, Fla.-based National Molding, in a phone interview.
“This is strategically very important for us,” he added, noting that about 75 percent of Ven-Tel's business is in medical molding.
Ven-Tel was started in 1982 by Ed Venner and will now be known as the National Molding Medical division. It is less than 300 miles from the Miami Lakes site.
“They have an extraordinary facility. I've seen injection molders all over the world and this one is exceptional and they have a great group of people,” Linton said.
Ven-Tel operates in a 107,000-square-foot facility with 50 injection molding machines ranging from 80 to 550 tons of clamping force. It has about 100 employees. Venner is retiring, but the rest of the staff remains.
Linton sees lots of potential in the Ven-Tel facility and would like to continue its growth.
“We believe we can double the size of the operation in the same building and using the same footprint,” he said.
Linton said adding the facility will diversify National Molding's operations. He also noted that National Molding added $1 million in computer numerically controlled machining equipment in Miami Lakes to bring back tooling work to the United States.
National Molding also has operations in Ambridge, Pa., and Shanghai.
The automotive market has been an important for National Molding, which uses a proprietary hetero-cavity system for quick-change modular tools. The technology allows the molder to make multiple products within one product run. The company's Shanghai plant is 100 percent focused on automotive work, while its other facilities are automotive-intensive as well.
The company makes more than a billion automotive parts a year, and is known for its fasteners and buckles used by the automotive and outdoor retail markets. It sells to Tier 1 and Tier 2 automotive companies as well as OEMs. It serves the U.S. military and law enforcement, as well as plumbing, electronics and other markets.
Overall, it will now have 225 injection molding machines ranging from 60 to 550 tons.
National Molding was acquired in 2008 by investor Taglich Private Equity LLC of New York. Linton said the private company does not release sales figures, but he added that sales have grown every year since the purchase.