Injection molding is the largest plastics processing sector, so we have to expect that molds, machinery and resins going into that segment will see good demand. However, at the end of 2015 and in early 2016, there was little to show that industry segment was anything but flat.
According to statistics compiled by the Committee on Equipment Statistics (CES) of SPI: The Plastics Industry Trade Association (Washington, DC), total shipments of plastics machinery by North American suppliers posted another strong performance in the third quarter of 2015. By that they mean that the trend line for shipments “flattened out” in mid-2015, but was “flat at a higher level.” But flat is flat, nonetheless.
What has not flattened out are the demands placed on injection molders and moldmakers. Molders say that pricing pressures are still significant as cost continues to be a primary factor in OEMs’ supplier selection. While pricing pressures from China’s mold suppliers has abated somewhat for moldmakers, they continue to be pressured to reduce costs and provide more services. Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, they need to have the financial wherewithal to play in the same sandbox as their customers, the global OEMs.
In this Special Report on injection molding from PlasticsToday, industry expert Clare Goldsberry provides an analysis of injection molding services and equipment suppliers and toolmakers in the marketplace.