Luis Palafox
Director General
InMolding
/
View from the Top

InMolding: Specialization Rooted in Experience, Trained Workforce

By Alejandro Enríquez | Wed, 07/01/2020 - 17:03

Q: How is Inmolding evolving to fill the existing gaps in terms of plastic injection components in Mexico?

A: After six years, we have improved our method of processing engineered plastics, including our response time, injection parameters and minimizing defects. For two years in a row, our projects have been delivered with zero defects to our clients. Additionally, our staff is trained and certified in scientific plastic injection processes.

We are a flexible company with a very quick response capacity. If a client wants to change from model A to model B, we can do that in a matter of hours. Another advantage is that we operate with just-in-time stock to reduce our clients’ inventory burden. We can store components until the client requires them and deliver them at the right time to the OEM.

Q: How is Inmolding raising awareness of these features among potential Tier 1 clients?

A: We invite potential clients to see how we process polymers, to learn about our track record with existing clients and to see how we maintain our quality levels. Inmolding has a Quality Operation System that measures several variables: PPMs, supplier performance, staff turnover rate and quality alerts. Even when there are no PPMs, if a client suspects there is a defect within the system, our quality alerts notify our quality engineer to go directly to the client’s plant to check the material and certify it complies with all requirements. This is something we implemented thanks to our privileged location. OEMs are used to importing small components from Asia, the US or other regions, meaning response times are longer while our times are only a matter of hours or even minutes.

Q: How does Inmolding’s value proposition differ from that of foreign competitors or other local suppliers?

A: Our differentiators are quick response, flexibility, customer service and zero defects. Apart from that, we consider ourselves a complement to big Mexican companies and foreign investors. Our value proposition is focused on low tonnage of around 75 to 160 tons, which might not be very interesting for large companies. Instead of bringing these pieces in containers as they used to, it is more strategic for OEMs to outsource production of these components to a local company here.

Q: What impact do you expect from the new rules of origin established in USMCA?

A: The new rules will help us to adopt new technologies, products and processes. Our knowledge of the client and of manufacturing processes will increase exponentially because we will be able to manufacture new products. For example, GM is transferring some processes from China. As regional content increases, new practices will take us to further specialization and more advanced technology.

Our strategy is to create strategic business partnerships with more experienced companies, growing alongside them on tooling production and our plastic injection offering. For example, in tooling production we are partnering with a consortium for mold fabrication established in San Luis Potosi. The consortium was established alongside CIATEQ, a research center improving Mexican engineering. Another priority is training. The moment that new recruits arrive, they receive basic and advanced plastic injection courses. Quality engineers receive training on plastic injection quality and people supervising the process are constantly trained on new technologies.

Q: How are local players addressing the issues related to gaps in the supply chain to help the overall production chain to grow?

A: Petrochemistry is a very important factor in the plastics industry and OEMs have very specific requirements. In countries where petrochemistry is more advanced, it is easier to comply with those requirements as they require destructive, validation and thermal cycles testing. There is a big opportunity in test engineering and in a laboratory where the quality of local materials can be tested to the level required by OEMs. As long as we do not have that, we will continue to import resins. It would be fantastic to save transportation costs but we need local validation.

 

Inmolding is an injection molding company located in San Luis Potosi. The company offers a variety of services, including mold transfer, assembly of plastic parts and product, tool and process development

Alejandro Enríquez Alejandro Enríquez Journalist and Industry Analyst

MORE BY THE AUTHOR

Automotive
by Alejandro Enríquez
Automotive
by Alejandro Enríquez
Automotive
by Alejandro Enríquez
Automotive
by Alejandro Enríquez
Automotive
by Alejandro Enríquez