STOW, Ohio—Anderson International Corp. executives knew an expansion of the firm's new site was inevitable when the machinery maker relocated. They didn't know “inevitable” meant two years.
Blame it on much faster growth than expected by the manufacturer of dewatering and drying equipment for synthetic rubber producers.
The company has gone from 50 to 130 employees since it moved from its Cleveland plant to a facility in Stow, an Akron suburb.
“We're buried,” said Lenny Trocano, president of the privately held company as he walked through the busy machine hall. The building is packed with equipment and work-in-progress.
Trocano and Paul Kohntopp, Anderson vice president and general manager, said they were aware the 78,200-sq.-ft. facility wasn't perfect when the firm acquired it in 2011. “We knew in our gut we should have bought bigger,” Kohntopp said.
“This was smaller than what we came from,” an aging structure on Cleveland's east side, Kohntopp said. “But we are definitely more efficient here,” with a well-thought-out floor layout.
The Stow site has an extensive system of overhead cranes, vital for a company that handles extremely heavy parts and equipment, Trocano said. And the steel structure includes an area that obviously could accommodate an expansion—a back wall that will be extended another 24,000 square feet on the 10-acre site.
Kohntopp termed the cost of the project “substantial.” The firm will rearrange storage and open areas for machinery, including new equipment. The project, slated for completion this fall, also will add some offices.