Wisconsin Manufacturing News


Prism Manufacturing to move to Port Washington; Johnson Controls caps strong quarter with acquisition; Snap-on sales up 9.8%; Bucyrus reports dip in quarterly profit; Badger Meter posts record quarter

Prism Manufacturing to move to Port Washington

Prism Manufacturing, a precision machine shop operation, plans to moves its operations from Brookfield and Manitowoc to the former Simplicity Manufacturing Co. plant in Port Washington.

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Prism will occupy 30,000 square feet of the 407,000-square-foot facility at 500 S. Spring St.

Prism Manufacturing was formed in 2009 when G&P Machine Company Inc. acquired the assets of Panda Industries Inc. The company specializes in precision screw machining.

Prism will bring 24 jobs to the Port Washington facility. The company has 12 current employees who will move to the facility, and it plans to hire another 12 employees.

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The Port Washington plant was formerly used to build snowthrowers and riding lawn mowers by the Simplicity division of Wauwatosa-based Briggs & Stratton Corp., which closed the plant in 2008, eliminating about 325 jobs.

After the building was closed by Briggs & Stratton, it was sold to Chris Coakley, the owner of Milwaukee-based C. Coakley Relocation Systems Inc. Coakley’s company is using a portion of the building, and he is leasing the remainder to other tenants.

Johnson Controls caps strong quarter with acquisition

Johnson Controls Inc. has posted another robust quarter and announced it has signed an agreement to acquire 90 percent of its existing joint venture with Delkor Corp., a leading automotive battery manufacturer based in Seoul, South Korea.

The remaining 10 percent will be acquired by the local management team, with all transactions completed no later than Aug. 15.

"Delkor is a strong and well-respected brand in Asia," said Alex Molinaroli, president of Power Solutions for Johnson Controls. "The acquisition further represents our commitment to local manufacturing presence and growth in Asia, complementing our recent announcements regarding our planned investments in China."

Johnson Controls reported fiscal third quarter net income of $418 million, or 61 cents per share, up from $163 million, or 26 cents per share, in the same period a year ago.

The Glendale-based company’s net sales grew to $8.5 billion from $7 billion a year earlier.

"We are pleased with our third quarter results. We capitalized on the recovery in several of our markets, leveraging our market leadership and improved cost structure to gain share and improve profitability," said Stephen Roell, Johnson Controls chairman and chief executive officer. "Sales in our automotive and power businesses grew at a double-digit pace, and our Building Efficiency business generated top-line growth for the first time in more than a year. In addition, the Building Efficiency order rate increased 9%, nearly double the pace of the second quarter, which exceeded our expectations."

Snap-on sales up 9.8%

Kenosha-based Snap-on Inc. reported second quarter net earnings of $45.3 million, or 78 cents per share, up from $37.4 million, or 65 cents per share, in the same period a year ago.

The company’s quarterly sales grew 9.8 percent to $647.6 million.

"Our second quarter results provide further testament to the benefits we continue to realize through our unwavering commitment to the Snap-on Value Creation Processes," said Nick Pinchuk, Snap-on chairman and chief executive officer. "We’re encouraged by the higher sales and operating margins on both a year-over-year and sequential basis, particularly since the shape of the global economic recovery is still not yet fully evident. Furthermore, our financial services transition remains well on track as we realized positive operating income in that segment for the quarter. In addition, we believe we’re making significant progress on our most important strategic initiatives: to enhance the franchisee network, to expand in vehicle repair facilities, to extend in critical industries, and to build in emerging markets. We believe that our advancements in those areas place Snap-on in a strong position to take full advantage of the global economic recovery, however it occurs. As always, I wish to thank our franchisees and our associates worldwide for their significant second quarter achievements and ongoing commitment."

Bucyrus reports dip in quarterly profit

South Milwaukee-based Bucyrus International Inc. reported second quarter net earnings of $73.2 million, or 91 cents per share, down 11 percent from $82.28 million, or $1.11 per share, in the same period a year ago.

The company’s quarterly sales grew to $868.7 million, up from $724.43 million a year earlier.

“We were very pleased with the quarter,” Tim Sullivan, chief executive officer of Bucyrus, said in a conference call with analysts this morning. “We were exactly on our plan and we exceeded it in several areas.”

Bucyrus’ sales and gross margins are also tracking to its estimates from earlier this year, Sullivan said. The company’s bookings are up significantly and could be bolstered if the U.S. Export Import Bank approves a loan guarantee for a large order from an Indian coal mine.

“I am cautiously optimistic that we can get that booking into our backlog … into the fourth quarter of the year,” Sullivan said. “We’ve been cautious to talk about it, but (the order) is really substantial. We’re keeping our fingers crossed and hoping that the government will do the right thing for us.”

Badger Meter posts record quarter

Badger Meter Inc. reported record second quarter net earnings of $8.0 million or 53 cents per share, up from $7.8 million, or 52 cents per share, in the same period a year ago.

The Milwaukee-based company’s quarterly net sales grew to $74.3 million from $67.8 million a year earlier.

"The increase in orders and shipments that began late in the first quarter continued into the second quarter. Sales were up in the majority of our product lines. Higher sales of our products for water applications were driven by increased demand for automatic meter reading (AMR) and advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) technology products, especially the Badger Orion radio frequency automatic meter reading system, and products for commercial water applications. Sales of our specialty products continued to improve from the lows of 2009," said Richard Meeusen, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Badger Meter.

Meeusen said the record second quarter earnings reflected a favorable product mix, the impact of the stronger U.S. dollar on international purchases and ongoing cost controls, somewhat offset by higher commodity costs, particularly copper. In addition, results include a gain of $740,000 for the fair value of land in Mexico which was received in settlement of claims against a building construction contractor.


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