No slowing down Featured

8:00pm EDT October 4, 2007

In just five years since its founding, Portage Precision Polymers Inc. has grown from six employees and just less than $2 million in annual sales to more than 60 employees and $18 million in revenue last year. Doug Hartley, president of the Ravenna-based custom polymers manufacturer, says his company’s growth was not without its share of bumps in the road.

“Just managing the growth is the most difficult thing to do when you grow that fast,” Hartley says. “In addition to financing the growth, making the organizational and structural transition to a larger operation has presented its own challenge. We were kind of running it like a start-up company, the way we did things five years ago. We’ve grown so fast we can’t manage it and run it the way we did in the beginning. One thing we’ve done a lot of and are continuing to do is restructure the organization for the type of sales we have, now up to maybe $30 million in sales.”

Portage Precision Polymers’ dedication to its customers has resulted in a reputation not just for the quality of its products, but for the quality of its service. Hartley says the company has made an extra effort to not lose sight of customer needs during its growth.

“We’ve really paid attention to our customers and done everything to increasing those efforts where we could,” Hartley says. “We became ISO-certified last September, as well, because our customers had a need for us to do so. We really have focused on the customers’ requirements and their needs.”

Hartley, an industry veteran, says that while he anticipated when founding the company that its current success was possible, the growth is already ahead of its business plan. That’s not to say, however, that Portage Precision Polymers has any intention of slowing down.

“We’re certainly not going to stop growing,” Hartley says. “We’ve added equipment over the last few years to increase our capacity, and we’re in the process now of trying to fill that capacity. We’re also in the process of planning an additional line. So we certainly plan on continuing to grow and support our customers in any way we can.”

HOW TO REACH: Portage Precision Polymers Inc., (330) 296-6327 or