Overall organic revenues are down about 2 percent at Milacron due to a weakening capital spending outlook in North America and China, but the company reports good progress in the American automotive market, particularly for large, complex machines, such as a recently announced four-component (four material streams) unit.
One large order was delivered this year to a major Tier One automotive supplier.
“We have real good progress, in terms of looking at RFQ’s for other tier ones that are trying to accomplish the same thing,” Milacron CEO Tom Goeke said in an earnings conference call last Friday.
The progress has been made even though European machinery builders have been attempting to leverage a foreign exchange advantage into increased North American market share.
The Maxima Series clamps are manufactured in Milacron’s Afton, Ohio plant, along with the complete system assembly. The parallel injection units on the Maxima multi-component systems are designed, engineered and manufactured in the company’s Malterdingen, Germany plant.
Four-component machines are used to make products such as tail lights, where you have multiple colors or interior components that have multiple surfaces or textures.
Milacron reports positive business in automotive, appliance, housewares markets in North America. Sales to custom molders in the construction market are weak. “Construction for us, is an industry that we have not reached the same capacity levels that we had prior to the Great Recession,” Goeke said. “And so, our customers actually aren’t buying new equipment. A lot of it is retrofit, rebuild, parts and services, where we haven’t reached the same capacity.”