Ray’s Story – In 1997, Ray Coombs started manufacturing mold components on nights and weekends from the basement of his home – marking the start of Westminster Tool. For two years, Ray built a customer base and small team so that he could make the jump to leaving his full-time job and investing only in Westminster Tool. In May 1999, Westminster Tool moved out of the basement and into our first home, what we refer to as “the chicken-coop.” Here the team grew from 6 to 16 and started building a brand as a high-quality injection mold builder.
5 East Parkway – By 2003, the company had outgrown the “chicken-coop” and moved into our current home, 5 East Parkway. The new facility was a large, clean, state of the art facility that enabled us to truly showcase the quality of our manufacturing abilities. It was here that we started solving complex challenges and establishing a known name as a solutions provider. Through this, our solutions expanded from injection mold systems into composite tooling and high-performance component production for the aerospace industry.
Cultural Transformation – In 2013, our company started to face the national skilled labor gap that many others were facing. We realized that if we were going to sustain our business in the future, we needed to establish a way to grow the next generation of manufacturers. Through this motivation came a 5 year long cultural transformation that resulted in our house and the Westminster Academy. During this time, we put all capital equipment investments on hold and invested all our profits into human capital and developing our culture and training programs. Over these 5 years our company grew from 25 to 35 employees, our average age decreased from 50+ to 33, our tooling sales nearly doubled, and most importantly, our efficiencies drastically improved. It was a long and certainly not easy process, but it has resulted in the business model and processes that are the foundation of our current success.
Looking Ahead – While our journey to get here was exciting, challenging and rewarding, we know it is only the beginning. Our culture continues to evolve as our customers’ needs change, and our processes continue to improve as our employees grow. We look forward to expanding into our second facility in Sterling, CT (just a 10 minute drive) so that we can better address our customers’ growing needs.