As we have done for years, this week PlastiCert will celebrate our founder’s birthday. Howard Ystebow started PlastiCert back in 1981. Originally from a very small North Dakota town, he was a multi-talented electrical engineer. He learned injection molding early, and spent his career establishing injection molding facilities around the world for a major electrical connector OEM.
Next year, it will be 40 years since he decided to create PlastiCert. He built a thriving business on the model of being highly technical, doing precision insert and micro molding, and offering a high level of service.
I never got to meet Howard and truly wish I had. Word is he was an engineer that had great business sense. Technically, they say Howard could walk onto the production floor and tell if he was making money or not just by the sounds being generated. Business wise he had a loyal customer base, appreciative that he built molds and made parts based on what their needs were, regardless of impact to his production floor. Of course, there are also the stereotypical engineer stories. Howard had the communication skills of a hardcore engineer, and no sense of style or fashion. Story goes that he went to a Cadillac dealer looking to buy a new car. With his disheveled hair and mismatched clothes, no one would wait on him.
PlastiCert, like many companies, has been evolving over the many years we have been in business. At the same time, PlastiCert has been true to Howard and his principles. Providing highly technical mold and molding offerings to OEMs with a commitment to service them and meet their needs. We have added to our capabilities, doing micro-molding, AND expanding into larger parts with our 500-ton press.
We have started prepping to celebrate 2021 which will be our 40th year in business. We’ll celebrate our successes, newly added equipment and an expanded customer base. But we will also remember who and what got us here. I truly wish I could have had a chance to meet Howard. It was his vision and work ethic that launched PlastiCert, established its identity and laid the groundwork for success through four decades.