When VMI Epe Holland B.V., through its VMI Americas Inc. unit, bought Manufacturing Technologies International Corp., officials from both companies said it literally was one of those deals where everybody wins.
For VMI, a supplier mainly of machinery related to tire manufacturing, it widens its breadth of offerings through access to technology related to the non-tire side of the rubber industry.
MTI, meanwhile, gets the backing of a global company and a chance to work closely with other members of TKH Group N.V., parent company of VMI.
The deal closed at the beginning of September, with MTI now operating as a VMI division under the name VMI-MTI. Bob Brown, MTI president and sole owner, is president of the new division. The terms of the deal weren't disclosed.
All manufacturing, sales and corporate offices of MTI-along with its 10 employees-will move from its Green, Ohio, location to the VMI Americas location in nearby Stow.
MTI specializes in fully automated, single-cavity rubber injection systems, automated adhesive application systems and assembly cells for the automotive, pharmaceutical and aerospace industries. The firm said its products help customers reduce manufacturing costs by greatly improving productivity with machinery that goes all the way from metal preparation through the injection molding and onto the secondary operations.
Members of the organization own or are inventors of more than 40 patents worldwide.
Originally, MTI was the advanced manufacturing process organization for GenCorp Inc., according to Brown. But as GenCorp sold its automotive-related divisions, Brown bought the related assets, retained some of the key people and founded MTI in 1996.
What MTI had in creativity and know-how, it lacked in resources, both in capital and manpower. ``This new division will provide key improvements over what we could do as a small individual company,'' said Brown. ``That will be reflected on our future sales with our customers.''
One thing he believes sets MTI apart is that most of the firm's staff has worked extensively in the rubber industry for manufacturers of rubber goods, rather than just at machinery shops. That means they can better understand what the customers are looking for.
Brown said he has known VMI officials for the past five years, so it was a ``long and pleasant discussion'' that ultimately led to the acquisition.
``We feel we finally have the opportunity to grow the business,'' he said. ``VMI is the perfect match for us because of their quality, their manufacturing methods, their respect for the customer and their reputation.''
Customer feedback has been positive so far. ``Realistically, (customers) were concerned buying capital equipment off a small organization, in particular say, injection presses with a 15-year life,'' Brown said.
That won't be a problem with VMI, which is headquartered in the Netherlands, employs 650 and has facilities in Germany, the U.S. and China.
``With the sales power of VMI behind MTI, we really think it will make a difference,'' said Auke Dalstra, VMI Americas president and CEO. ``It was difficult for MTI to do that in the past. We could see where customers would look at the size of the company and its limited resources, and that it would be looked at very critically.''
Dalstra added that with the right resources, the VMI-MTI division can be a big success.