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Talent Talk: How's business at Bay Plastics, Jason Forgash?

Earlier this week I had the pleasure of talking with Mr. Jason Forgash, EVP of Bay Plastics Machinery in Bay City, MI. Bay Plastics Machinery traces its roots back to 1961, when Jason's grandfather, Tony Forgash, Sr. founded JETRO, Inc. In 1974 JETRO was purchased by Conair and operated as Conair JETRO. When Conair decided to consolidate all manufacturing in Pennsylvania in 1997, a core group elected to remain in the area and form Bay Plastics Machinery.

Bay manufactures, sells, and services pelletizers into four main customer groups; color houses, material manufacturers, compounders, and recyclers. "2011 is poised to be the strongest sales year in our company's history", according to Forgash.

"Everyone knows what 2009 was like", Forgash continued, "but it was around September 2010 when things really began to tilt in a positive direction for us. Overall we are up about 40% from year-ago comparisons, and almost 70% from comparable 2009 levels."

Like me, Jason tries not to watch the naysayers on the nightly news programs. "Maybe they know something I don't, but our business is strong right now." So strong they recently expanded with a new 11,000 square foot assembly area across the street from their original facility.

While the materials manufacturing segment of their business is virtually non-existent right now, that has been more than made up in other areas. In particular, the recyclers have provided strong demand for pelletizing systems.

The strong sales, especially over the past 12 months, have enabled Bay to add new employees, and Forgash doesn't envision that changing anytime soon. "We'll probably stay where we're at, or maybe add a person or two. Going forward the year over year growth comparisons will get more challenging as we have raised the bar, but we just signed a couple new orders. And 2012 is an NPE year, which typically gives us a nice boost."

I want to thank Jason for his time, and for sharing some good news for our industry. Talent Talk will continue to fight a Don Quixote-like battle against the bad economic news until there are no windmills left standing, so if you would like to share some good news in a future blog, please contact me. For bad news, you continue to have many options......

About the author: Paul Sturgeon is business manager with KLA Industries based in Cincinnati, OH, an executive search firm specializing in plastics and polymer technology. If you have a topic you'd like to see discussed, a company that is growing, or other ideas for his blog, e-mail Paul at [email protected].

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