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This has been a winning season for mold manufacturer Industrial Molds Group in Rockford, IL. The company was the proud manufacturer of a complex mold in a metal-to-plastic conversion of a water outlet for customer MPC that won the Single Part Award in the International Plastics Design Competition at NPE2012 in April. Industrial Molds next captured the Leadtime Leader Award given at the recent Amerimold trade show in Novi, MI.

Clare Goldsberry

June 25, 2012

3 Min Read
Industrial Molds Group keeps on winning

This has been a winning season for mold manufacturer Industrial Molds Group in Rockford, IL. The company was the proud manufacturer of a complex mold in a metal-to-plastic conversion of a water outlet for customer MPC that won the Single Part Award in the International Plastics Design Competition at NPE2012 in April. Industrial Molds next captured the Leadtime Leader Award given at the recent Amerimold trade show in Novi, MI.
   
The company, founded by the Peterson family patriarch, Jack Peterson, in 1968, has grown to become one of the largest and most recognized mold companies in the Midwest. With 60 employees including a top-notch engineering team, and recent investments in automation and machine tool capabilities, Industrial Molds Group has managed to cut its leadtime for new mold design and build to eight weeks. Given that Industrial Molds tackles complex projects that other shops said couldn’t be done—as in the case of the water outlet that won the IPDC award—that leadtime is a true benchmark in the industry.

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The Petersons of Industrial Molds Group. L-R: Tim, Jack, and Eric.

While that is a great achievement, Tim Peterson notes that getting to that point didn’t happen overnight. The company was built on the philosophy that innovation, creativity, and hard work are the keys to success. 

“In the late 1990s, we started the transition to a team-oriented approach in design engineering and mold development to shorten lead times, improve quality and meet customer requirements for faster time-to-market,” explains Tim Peterson, VP of Industrial Molds Group. “At that time we added our first automated machine for carbon. In 2002 we became ISO certified and have maintained our certification since. Also in 2002 we added 5-axis carbon cutting with a robot and two EDMs with robot, equipped with Erowa’s job management system to provide greater production efficiencies throughout the shop.” 

Over the past three years, Industrial Molds has invested more than $1 million in state-of-the-art high-speed machining, EDM equipment, and software. They have also invested in hiring and training the best moldmakers they can. Today the company is run by a management team: John Kuntze, CFO, and brothers Eric Peterson, operations manager, and Tim Peterson, who also serves as sales manager.

Tim Peterson adds that Industrial Molds Group recognizes that being competitively successful means investing in both state-of-the-art equipment and in people. “We understand that any company can buy equipment, but it is the creativity of our engineers, the innovative thinking of our mold designers, and the precision skills of our machinists and mold makers that make the difference, that put us on the cutting edge.” he says. 

Industrial also offers a fully staffed Engineering Technology Center that provides the latest CAD/CAM software to provide product development assistance and ensure manufacturability of every component to optimize molding and parts production in a cost-effective manner.

“Our long-term relationships with many of our customers are sustained by our ability to meet and exceed customer requirements and not be ‘just another mold shop.’ We review our business philosophy often, and have honed it over the years as new challenges have arisen such as that China has presented, and continually work to become better in every way to achieve customer satisfaction,” said Peterson upon learning Industrial Molds Group won the award, which was presented by Moldmaking Technology magazine. “We believe this is the best strategy to compete: not chase the competition but become the best we can be every day, and be a true leader.”

About the Author(s)

Clare Goldsberry

Until she retired in September 2021, Clare Goldsberry reported on the plastics industry for more than 30 years. In addition to the 10,000+ articles she has written, by her own estimation, she is the author of several books, including The Business of Injection Molding: How to succeed as a custom molder and Purchasing Injection Molds: A buyers guide. Goldsberry is a member of the Plastics Pioneers Association. She reflected on her long career in "Time to Say Good-Bye."

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