Made in Santa Maria: Prince Lionheart puts its plastics plant to new uses
If you bought anything made of plastic in the past 15 years, chances are it read “Made in China.” Central Coast Molding, a new venture launched by longtime Santa Maria manufacturer Prince Lionheart, is working to make more plastic products read “Made in the U.S.A.”
Founded in 1973, Prince Lionheart has expanded to become a worldwide supplier of baby products and makes nearly half of its wares at a state-of-the-art factory in Santa Maria. For years, the company’s leaders had considered opening the plant’s plastic injection molding lines to outside customers when not in use. While the company has weathered the recession in good shape, a dip in demand persuaded CEO Kelly Griffiths to pull the trigger on Central Coast Molding, a venture to get more out of the firm’s 12 injection molding presses.
“It’s just untapped potential,” Griffiths said. “We have everything here. We’re pretty busy now, but we made this a strategic initiative.”