BHR Global Associates, Inc. is dedicated to helping companies bring their products to market successfully. We can help with finalization your design, to helping find the right source at the right price, help you maintain a solid on going supply chain and help you sell the product through our team of sales professionals. Our blog will supply information and details on successes, failures, and road blocks to avoid in bringing products to their full potential.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Getting To Market More Quickly-An Alternative

This article depicts an alternative in getting new products to market faster and potentially save money long term. Spectrum Plastics Group announced an alliance with a leading tool design and manufacturing company, which moved its Twin Cities operations into Spectrum’s molding facility in Minneapolis. This move addresses Spectrum’s customers' needs for high-quality, quick-turn tooling. In an interview with PlasticsToday, Tim Nakari, director of marketing for Spectrum, said that the company isn’t releasing the name of the mold manufacturer to avoid confusion in the marketplace and to preserve the brand name that both companies have developed. The alliance provided the opportunity for the mold manufacturing company to expand into the larger space that it needed, and to provide mold services required by Spectrum’s Minneapolis operations. “This is a mutually beneficial alliance,” said Nakari. Spectrum has tooling capabilities in its New York and Connecticut operations, but not in its Minneapolis facility. “We needed a tooling partner in Minneapolis to allow us fast response for tool modifications, revision changes, and customers’ need for faster time-to-market,” said Nakari. Quick-Turn Tooling is the name that Spectrum Plastics has given to its tooling that offers shorter lead times than multicavity production tooling, yet brings the quality of tooling that can be used as a “bridge” tool to provide limited production until the production tool is built. “Quick-Turn Tooling provides a lower part-quantity mold than a production mold, but higher quality than the typical rapid tooling,” said Nakari. “What we discovered,” Nakari explained, “is that our customer base is 80% medical and aerospace/defense, and each of those customers look to Spectrum Plastics Group to help them speed their products to market. However, they want exactly what they draw, so we’ll burn things in with EDM, but use interchangeable inserts and hand-load inserts to reduce lead times. Yet we can make a tool that can pass first article inspection and in some cases be fully validated in medical applications to pass ISO 13485 requirements. That differentiates us. We’re not getting into the rapid tooling business to get 200 parts quickly. We add value by going beyond that so that the first part comes out production quality.” Nakari added that most of the company’s Quick-Turn Tooling projects can be completed in 2-8 weeks, but that they serve customers whose molds are generally of greater complexity and require greater dimensional stability. “We work to bring their new products to market and support product needs on their legacy programs as well,” Nakari noted. “As we get launched to produce the mold we offer our customers rapid prototyping services, a fully designed mold built steel safe, yet validate the design based on prototype feedback so that we can finish the features and short-cut the tool lead time. Spectrum Plastics Group’s Minneapolis division runs 60 injection molding presses up to 650 tons. Company-wide, Spectrum runs approximately 100 presses, and offers a range of services including moldmaking, as well as various molding processes including reel-to-reel molding. .