What do you do differently that makes you stand out in the marketplace?
One of the most depressing feelings for an owner of a plastics company is the lack of a clear or concise answer — meaning they compete on convenience (legacy business contacts) and price. Growth is often difficult for these companies, and margins appear to get slimmer each year. However, we are finding that molders of liquid silicone rubber are quick to share they possess this skill, but is it enough to attract growth and profitability?
Plante Moran has conducted the North American Plastics Industry Study for more than 20 years. This year, we streamlined the questionnaire to make it easier for completion, but also added supplemental questionnaires to address specific items of interest. One of those is the LSR questionnaire. We are still collecting data, but we have some preliminary findings.
It is quite common for LSR parts to be small or the LSR joined on a thermoplastic part to be of a limited amount. Therefore, the pounds of LSR consumed by a processor is typically measured in the hundreds of thousand pounds or less vs. the millions of pounds or more of thermoplastic resin. Certainly there are large companies that process LSR, but the volume of LSR remains limited as LSR complements the functionality of a larger thermoplastic part.