Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Growth by Remote Control

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Growth by Remote Control

Article excerpt

Four years after opening its North American headquarters in Oklahoma City, Hetronic USA has moved to a new location that more than triples its office space while housing its product assembly line.

The Langquaid, Germany-based manufacturer of radio remote control units for heavy equipment moved this week from 2,800 square feet in the Greenfield Service Center to 9,300 square feet at 4300 Highline Blvd., Building A.

The Oklahoma City office already makes repairs for products in South America, the United States and Canada, and will begin building the products. "It's a big step," said President Max Heckl, who founded the company 15 years ago in his garage. The office will have the capacity to build 15 to 20 systems per week, ranging in price from $800 to $800,000. The office employs 13 people, and will add three or four more this year. The radio remote control systems are mostly used in industrial applications, to allow an equipment operator to stay a safe distance from the work or to allow a crane operator a better view of the work area. The company also may customize products for specific uses. One of the most complex units it built was a $1 million radio remote control for an airplane washing system. "Our goal is to build for the customer what he really needs," Heckl said. "You add safety, and you save time and money." Hetronic, which also has a production facility in Malta, plans to open an office in Osaka, Japan, this year. "We are really around the globe," Heckl said. The biggest part of the company's $20 million sales in 1997 was in European countries. U.S. sales accounted for $3.5 million of the company's revenues, up from $500,000 in 1994, the first year the U.S. office opened. Heckl expects U.S. sales to be in excess of $4 million in 1998. "I think there's some more potential for growth," Heckl said. "We just got really started. …

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