Crown Casting Industries, Hodges, SC, closed on September 30, according to a local news reports. Heather Simmons Jones, CEO of the Greenwood Partnership Alliance, confirmed the news by email to the Index-Journal in Greenwood, SC. Twenty-eight workers were left unemployed by the closing, she indicated.
The newspaper quoted Mark Ross, president and CEO of parent company Ross International Ltd., as saying poor market conditions forced the decision to shut-down the plant. "During the past year, key foundry markets like heavy equipment and oil-and-gas exploration have decreased in size. The strong U.S. dollar has disproportionately affected capital equipment exports, a key casting market," Ross stated. "Currently, these factors have resulted in U.S. foundries operating at the lowest level since 2008."
Crown Casting Industries operated as an air-set jobbing foundry for short- to mid-run production of gray iron, ductile iron, and bronze castings weighing less than 300 lbs. It operated two five-ton coreless induction furnaces for iron melting, and three one-ton furnaces for bronze melting.
Its target customers were manufacturers of glass molds, medical and dental equipment, machine tools, compressors, HVAC, pumps and motors, and agricultural and industrial equipment.
Ross International Ltd., based in Washington, PA, is a holding company for business that include Ross Sand Casting Industries LLC in Orrville, OH, and Winchester, IN, and Union City Non-Ferrous Inc., in Union City, OH. It also has metalcasting operations in Colombia and France, and several operations around the world manufacturing glass molds.