In Europe, it long has been common practice for companies to make, sell and service/clean dunnage – which are reusable plastic transport items, such as pallets, top frames and divider sheets. To meet this need in the United States, Orbis Corp. and the German company Cartonplast GmbH founded Corbi Plastics. 

Co-Operative Industries has a sharp focus on customer service and a willingness to set itself apart from the competition in the eyes of their clients, President and CEO Sam Symonds says. “We have a willingness to respond quickly, and we generally don’t turn down an opportunity because of size,” he says. “Some­times, our competitors [will not fill an order] because it is only one or two items. Having worked with customers that have specific requirements, we have enjoyed the benefit of their follow-on business. In addition, these same customers have shared their positive opinions of us with their with industry peers, resulting in new business relationships for Co-Operative Industries.”

It is not easy for any company to shift product focus and open itself to a larger market. It takes meticu­lous planning to ensure success, and the con­fidence to know that the company will be able to handle its reinvention. Columbia Marking Tools be­lieves it is ready. Some companies find a niche market and stay the course, while others constantly evolve, striving for new developments. Columbia is a company that has been able to accomplish both, and says its next product line in the marking industry – I-Mark™ – will separate it from its competitors. 

When Dale Tompkins became the president of St. Louis-based Code 3 Inc. in July 2008, the company was “people strong, but process and ima­gination weak,” he says. Changes needed to be made, he explains, but he was optimistic that Code 3 had the desire and intent to improve. He also had the backing of Code 3’s parent – Public Safety Equipment – which designs, manufactures and markets engineered products that enhance safe travel for the motoring public.

Gone are the days when Japan was the leader in electronics manufacturing. Gaining its foothold in the nano­technology scene is 10-year-old CEPC – Canadian Electronic Powders Corp. – a Saint-Laurent, Que­bec-based manufacturer of nickel electronic powders. CEPC targets high-end, high-capacitance miniaturization electronic markets, such as iPods, mp3 players, mini-notebooks and other high-value products that require miniaturization.

Many firms have suffered in the face of the economic downturn, but Bosal International has successfully weathered it with minimum disruptions, President of North American Operations Spencer Sterling says. “[We are] poised to take advantage of the inevitable upswing, which has already shown signs of having commenced,” he says. Based in Lummen, Belgium, Bosal International manufactures exhaust systems for passenger cars, trucks and industrial applications; catalytic converters; towbar systems; roof bars; and roof racks. Additionally, the company produces an extensive line of jacks and toolkits, precision steel tubing, cabins, warehouse racking systems and irrigation equipment.

As the North American subsidiary of the Alo Group, Alo North America strives to keep the leading position in its markets, Production Director Jan Sandsjö says. “Alo’s bus­i­ness strategy is to lead the industry in innovative design and technical specifications,” he says. “We endeavor to do our part here in North Amer­ica to achieve the dynamics asso­ciated with a global leading producer.”

It appears to Aesco Electronics Inc. President Roger Engle that the Akron, Ohio-based company is emer­ging from the recession victorious, as “we’re actually being inundated with new business at the moment,” he reports. Thanks to its conservative financing strategies and expansive suite of services suited to a broad customer base, Aesco is well positioned to come out of the economic storm even stronger than before, and with some newly added quality certifications in place, the company anticipates a rise in profits this year as it enters into new markets. 

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