Industry veteran Lawrence Austin has purchased a second small injection molding company in southeastern Wisconsin — Tri-Tec Corp., which specializes in gears, parts with internal and external threads, and other precision components.
Austin said he bought Tri-Tec in Darien, Wis., in November, from David C. Jones, who took over ownership and management of the molder in 1988. His father, F. Carroll Jones, founded Tri-Tec in 1976.
Terms were not disclosed.
In mid-2015, Austin purchased Plasti-coil Inc. in nearby Lake Geneva, Wis.
He plans to move Tri-Tec into the Plasti-coil plant, but run each as a separate entity. Customers will continue working with the same people from before the acquisition, Austin said. The two companies do not have overlapping customers. Lake Geneva is about 20 miles from Darien.
Plasti-coil molds electrical bobbins, does insert molding and molds some small precision parts for automotive, the water softener industry and other markets.
Both companies are small molders. Tri-Tec employs about 23 people and Plasti-coil has about 25 employees. Austin said combined sales of both operations is just under $6 million.
Together, Tri-Tec and Plasti-coil run a total of 45 injection molding machines. Austin said the company will keep the best of the presses when the two operations are based in Lake Geneva.
Tri-Tec also does secondary operations such as hot stamping, pad printing and ultrasonic welding.
One big attraction: Tri-Tec's complete tool room. Austin plans to expand the tool room to serve both Tri-Tec and Plasti-coil — giving a key advantage to both molders, he said.
Austin is a Wisconsin native. For 30 years, he was vice president of finance at molder Miniature Precision Components Inc. in Walworth, Wis. He also was a long-time member of the volunteer fire department, as an EMT.
After working at MPC, which grew to become a major plastics processor, Austin is excited to be back at a small company — and part of a rejuvenated U.S. manufacturing sector.
“We want to be partners with our customers in any area that adds value to our partnership, to grow our business and create jobs in the United States,” he said.