D&H Industries expands, adds capabilities

Oconomowoc-based stamping company will begin production in 24,000-square-foot addition by mid August

D&H Industries, an Oconomowoc-based stamping company, will complete a 24,000-square-foot addition by the end of July. When the expansion is complete, the company will purchase six new presses, new coil lines and several other new machines.

D&H serves OEM customers in the lawn and garden, construction, agriculture and related markets. It also produces magazines used by the U.S. military and other militaries of U.S. allies, said Mike San Filippo, national sales manager for the company.

“The commercial part normally makes up 60 to 65 percent of our sales and the military side is 35 to 40 percent,” he said. “This year, it’s flip-flopped. With the downturn in the economy, the agriculture, construction and housing markets are all down.”

While its commercial orders have slumped this year, D&H’s military orders have increased. The company produces ammunition magazines for the M16 and AR-15 rifles for the U.S., Israel, Belgium, Philippines and other friendly governments, San Filippo said.

“It’s all done through a highly regulated U.S. government market,” he said. “We’re also working on some additional foreign contracts at this time.”

While D&H’s magazine orders have increased this year, they were not sufficient to prevent a 10-person layoff in June. Today, the company has about 70 workers.

D&H’s expansion will help the company diversify and capture orders from the commercial market that it is not able to serve now, San Filippo said. Its new equipment includes 1,000-ton and 500-ton hydraulic presses, as well as 800-ton, 300-ton and 200-ton straight side presses.

“We’ll be able to be more competitive in the deep draw market and expand our relationships with our lawn and garden, construction and agricultural customers,” San Filippo said. “We will expand our capabilities to offer additional processes to our customer base, which will open opportunities to look at other areas of manufacturing.”

The 24,000-square-foot addition will be fully operational in August, San Filippo said. When complete, D&H will have about 91,000 square feet of space under roof.

While the company expects the expansion to result in growth and new employees, there are no immediate plans for hiring.

“Our employment will be at the same level until we fill that capacity,” San Filippo said. “We see our third quarter being relatively flat and the fourth quarter will start to pick up again.”


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