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Cranberry Township, PA—Instead of launching new products to round out a portfolio, plastics equipment supplier Conair is now creating machinery, and business units, that are purpose-built to solve specific problems within end markets and geographies. During a recent visit to the company’s Cranberry Township, PA headquarters, Larry Doyle, Conair’s VP of global sales and marketing, laid out the new philosophy and how it most recently led to the creation of a film and sheet initiative.

Tony Deligio

August 12, 2009

2 Min Read
Conair film/sheet initiative reflects a new product-development strategy

Cranberry Township, PA—Instead of launching new products to round out a portfolio, plastics equipment supplier Conair is now creating machinery, and business units, that are purpose-built to solve specific problems within end markets and geographies. During a recent visit to the company’s Cranberry Township, PA headquarters, Larry Doyle, Conair’s VP of global sales and marketing, laid out the new philosophy and how it most recently led to the creation of a film and sheet initiative.

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The ScrapSaver from Conair is one of three, sheet- and film extrusion-related product launches from the company reflecting a new to-market strategy.

“It’s [Conair’s] opinion that customers today are not necessarily looking for equipment,” Doyle said, “they’re really looking for solutions to specific issues that they have—issues that can improve their productivity; ways in which they can make themselves more competitive in the marketplace; ways in which they can maximize their productivity.”

To date, in addition to the film and sheet initiative launched at NPE2009 (June 22-26; McCormick Place, Chicago), the strategy has led to the creation of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and medical groups. The PET group has been built around the EnergySmart dryer line, launched at NPE in 2006 with the EnergySmart 2 and expanded upon this June with the single-stage EnergySmart. In addition, earlier this spring Conair formed a PET team in China, reorganizing some of its personnel to focus on PET and packaging in China. The team currently consists of three people with multidisciplinary backgrounds, including a general manager who also has a sales function, and an application specialist with some service responsibilities.

“The goal would be to develop that team as we put more installations into China,” Doyle said, “to broaden that and include a staff like we have in the U.S.: project management, dedicated service, parts, more application support, more sales people.” The PET group also has a dedicated representative in India and Mexico.

The company also created a medical group that has initially focused on a perceived gap in medical tubing, helping medical processors looking for more precision. That group launched with a cutter/puller and a new cooling tank. At NPE2009, the film/sheet group brought a gravimetric control system for mono- and co-extrusion lines, a blender control that combines with the gravimetric control, and an integrated inline extrusion-scrap reclaim system.

“At the show, I think the bulk of our leads were film and sheet related,” Doyle said. “We got a really good, positive reaction from the attendees at the show and have a lot of active projects.” The strategy will be applied into other markets in coming months, but at this time Doyle couldn’t offer specifics, saying only the goal is to have more initiatives launched before the end of 2009. —Tony Deligio

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