Features for May 2007

Features Archive

Platers/Painters Profile: Meeting Tough Times Head On, Cadon Plating & Coatings Adapts to Survive Platers/Painters Profile: Meeting Tough Times Head On, Cadon Plating & Coatings Adapts to Survive

Alan Ensign, vice president and general manager of Wyandotte, Mich.–based Cadon Plating & Coatings, is no stranger to trying times. When the company abandoned the commodity-driven rack plating business years ago, revenues took a 30% hit. Then in in 1994, government regs forced its exodus from the cadmium plating market and, much later, the olive-drab business. As a result of that move, 25% of sales vaporized—just like that. If those setbacks weren’t enough, the company lost once-steady business when the U-bolt suppliers for several major auto suppliers installed their own paint lines, essentially cutting out Cadon completely.

Report from the Road: Michigan Platers Face Challenges Report from the Road: Michigan Platers Face Challenges

A few weeks ago I headed off to the state of Michigan—reporter’s pad and camera in tow—with the goal of sizing up a handful of plating and finishing operations for possible inclusion in the new “Profile” section of the magazine. I got much more than I bargained for via a healthy dose of harsh reality.