Cleveland — Industry veteran John Blundy is retiring again — and this time, he says it's going to stick.
After suspending his retirement in 2015 to take a two-year position leading the newly established North American manufacturing division of HRS-Flow Hot Runner Systems, Blundy will close out his tenure there May 31.
HRS-Flow, a division of Italian tooling component supplier Inglass Group SpA, opened a production operation in Grand Rapids, Mich., in 2015, its first in the U.S.
Blundy said he was drawn to the potential of a new market and the company's approach to technology.
"I'm proud to be able to look at what they've done, and the commitment that they've made to our industry in terms of innovation and in terms of accepting automation to produce a product," he said during an interview at the American Mold Builders Association's annual conference in Cleveland. He added he was impressed by the company's use of identical manufacturing equipment in all of its plants.
"That makes a big difference in terms of your ability to perform," he said. "The personality of the plant creeps into the product; they eliminate that. If you could walk out of our plant in Michigan, and walk into the plant in Italy, you would think you'd never left."
Blundy's four-decade career in plastics started at Husky Injection Molding Systems Ltd. in 1975. From there he moved to Mannesmann Demag, Krupp Corpoplast, Incoe Corp. and finally Beaumont Technologies before announcing his retirement — the first time.
Looking back on his career, Blundy recalled a quote by Calvin Coolidge about the role of persistence in success, which he keeps on a sign in his office.
"Persistence is omnipotent," he recited. "Every person that works for me, that I've hired, I would sit them down and point to that, and I would say, 'If you have that attitude, you will be successful, because it means you never quit.'
"Persistence trumps everything. If I've done anything in my career, that's what I've followed."
Blundy said HRS plans to name a director of sales who will take over the bulk of his role, with some additional duties handled by the general manager.
He has scheduled two speaking engagements in June: Plastics in Motion in Troy, Mich., and Amerimold in Rosemont, Ill. Then he plans to enjoy the outdoors from his home in the Smoky Mountains — fishing, hunting, hiking and motorcycling.
"I'm not going to be bored. I have a lot of stuff to do," he said. "I have four grandchildren and they need to learn how to fish."