Updated — The three-year machinery development and mold making agreement has ended between Athena Automation Ltd. and Sipa SpA.
Athena is Robert Schad's Vaughan, Ontario-based company that makes PET preform injection molding machines. Sipa is a blow molding machinery manufacturer based in Vittorio Veneto, Italy, with a North American operation in Atlanta.
Athena announced that the agreement has expired in a Feb. 17 news release.
The two machinery companies first agreed to work together in December 2012, to build a line of automated PET injection presses and blow molders. Sipa also was making all preform molds for Athena machines. Under the agreement, both companies would integrate their respective machinery into a complete system.
In the Feb. 17 announcement, Athena said it would support Sipa in shipping and servicing the remaining inventory of “Athena for Sipa” machines. But Athena's next generation of PET preform molding machines will be sold and serviced directly by Athena, alongside its injection presses for other markets.
In the news release, Schad said: “As far as molds are concerned, we're not forming an alliance with a specific mold maker — we will let customers choose the mold maker they want to use with the post-mold cooling and quick mold-change technologies from Athena.”
In a Feb. 22 news release, Sipa officials said working with Athena "has been an excellent experience ... and both parties have benefited from the collaboration."
'Over the last three years, Sipa has demonstrated its capacity to integrate equipment from Athena with its own molds and process technology, to provide customers with highly cost-effective and energy efficient production systems," the company said in the release.
"Sipa will continue to support Athena in the area of PET preform injection molding. Actual and future customers benefiting from the use of systems built by Athena and Sipa will continue to receive excellent support from both companies."
Currently, Athena manufactures injection presses with clamping forces of 150, 300 and 450 metric tons. Athena's new 155,000-square-foot machinery assembly factory is in the early start-up phase. Its existing 40,000-square-foot building will become the headquarters office and house sales and customer service.
Sipa SpA will exhibit at the K 2016 trade show in Düsseldorf, Germany, in Hall 13, Booth B11.