York, Pa. — At Engel Machinery Inc., a major supplier of injection molding machinery, a two-year leadership transition is now underway.
Paul Caprio officially started as president at York-based Engel on Jan. 2. For the next two years, he's working with as a team with Mark Sankovitch, who has been CEO for more than 10 years. Sankovitch plans retire at the end of 2021.
Engel Machinery is the North American arm of Schwertberg, Austria-based injection molding machinery maker Engel Holding GmbH.
Caprio led rival press maker Krauss-Maffei Corp. for 10 years. He left that company in June 2019. Now that he's part of Engel, Caprio talked about what he's learned about the company.
"You know, I never stepped in this building until Jan. 2. And I have to tell you, I was very impressed," Caprio said in an interview at the headquarters.
Caprio joined Engel just before most companies shut down nonessential travel and stopped welcoming visitors as a result of COVID-19. In the first few weeks, he managed to meet in person with many key Engel personnel, both in North America and Europe.
"It was a whirlwind tour. I still haven't met everyone; it's a company of nearly 7,000," Caprio said.
"I went over to Austria to see a couple of the main facilities and meet about 50 people on the sales and business unit side of the business, and that was excellent to see with my own eyes what we're doing and what we've done in terms of investments and so forth. Then I started to get out and visit customers."
Since joining the company, he's gained a new perspective on Engel.
"I always knew the company from a competitive side, but never behind the wall. I never knew the breadth of product — everything on the hydraulic side, on the electric side, different clamp configurations. I mean, it's really unbelievable the amount of equipment," he said.
Caprio was impressed with Engel's research and development.
"One of the questions I had was, how many patents are we sitting on? I always say the companies that have the patents are usually in the lead in terms of R&D. And we have in the range of 700 living patents. That's really big; it's something I want to emphasize more in the marketplace," he said.
Sankovitch said Engel has become a leader in lean manufacturing during his tenure, adopting methods that were first proven at the company headquarters in Austria. During a recent tour, he showed off numerous examples of the lean philosophy and how it streamlines communication, speeds service and minimizes waste.
Sankovitch also highlighted a significant investment in reducing its carbon footprint, adding a rooftop photovoltaic/solar system comprised of more than 1,300 panels at the York facility.
The system has a nameplate capacity of 500 kilowatts and is projected to generate about 640,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity per year.
The system output will cover 100 percent of the York facility's annual electricity consumption.