As the inventor of the linear motion guide, Japan’s THK found success in the United States when, at the International Machine Tool Show in Chicago in 1978, an American machine tool maker unveiled its latest machining center, which used THK’s new technology.
“Until Kearney & Trecker started using our product nobody really paid attention to linear motion guides. A lot of the success that THK achieved has been due to its experience with American companies,” said THK Manufacturing of America (TMA) President Akihiko Kambe.
Due to its success in America, THK moved closer to its customers in North America and in 1998, opened a manufacturing facility in Ohio, its first plant outside Japan.
“It’s been very important for us to manufacture here to support our North American customers and reduce lead times. With this facility, we encourage them to visit us and talk to us directly,” said Kambe.
“America is the biggest market in the world for innovation. If we can support our customers here in new fields such as 3-D printing, then we will be in a great position to grow with them when they expand globally,” he added.
TMA also manufactures automotive ball joint parts and has been providing its products to American automotive manufacturers in North America.