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Family run business: Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp.


Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp.

John M. Bonforte Sr. and John Bonforte Jr. hold a certificate at the Gasket Fabricators Association’s Gasketing and Converting Expo, held recently in Orlando, Fla.

Founder: John M. Bonforte Sr.

Headquarters: Long Branch, N.J.

Number of employees: 53.

Key family members active in the company: John M. Bonforte Jr., president, chief operating officer.

What it does: Monmouth Rubber & Plastics is a U.S. manufacturer of closed cell sponge rubber and plastic foam.

Markets served: Automotive, medical, sports, construction, electrical, miscellaneous industrial.

Number of generations involved in the business:Two.

What are the strengths of a family owned business? Family values. Our family values guide us in our business operations: How we treat each other, our employees and our customers. We bring to work the Bonforte family values and apply them to all aspects of our business.

What are the challenges of a family owned business? John Jr. is our succession plan. He now owns Monmouth Rubber & Plastics. He grew up in the business. After college, he worked for GE Plastics, learned the realities of the world, and then he came back ready to assume his current role. His having complete ownership resolves many possible issues. I advise; he decides.

Do non-family members hold any executive or ownership roles? Joann Buonomo is the office manager (who has) 42 years with Monmouth. Putting family values to the front is important. All issues are worked out just fine.

How much does the younger generation influence decisions? All four of my children and many of my grandchildren do and have worked at various tasks in the company. They bring vitality and a fresh approach, which helps us to stay focused on the people aspects of business.

Something you might not know about the company: When Monmouth started, there were 13 companies that manufactured closed cell sponge rubber buns. When I said I was going to go into manufacturing the above products, many said I was crazy. They said, “All 13 companies are struggling with quality, etc.” My answer was, “You can be crazy and still have a good idea.’ Today there are three of us left in the U.S. We are doing just fine.”

What advice would you offer a young entrepreneur who wants to start a family run business? Follow your dreams. Stick to it. If you feel it in your heart, run with it. Don’t give up. Be prepared to dream in the sky with your feet planted firmly on the ground.

And another thing: As a U.S. manufacturer of closed cell buns, Monmouth offers all the things that the government is trying to do to bring business back. The firm believes its business model works, products proudly made in the U.S.


Monmouth Rubber & Plastics earns ISO 9001:2008 Re-Certification

LONG BRANCH, NJ – Recycled rubber provider Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp. has been re-certified to ISO 9001:2008 standards.

“This is particularly gratifying because the certification is provided by SGS, one of the premier ISO houses worldwide,” company President and COO John M. Bonforte Jr. said. “There are no shortcuts in ISO. It provides a universal language of quality and dependability. Customers know that a company dedicated to ISO adheres to procedures, processes and attention to detail that are highly repeatable.

The re- Certification is equally exciting, Bonforte said, because it serves as a prelude to a major expansion at Monmouth, which manufactures and distributes a wide range of closed cell sponge rubber and plastic foam, in addition to its Bondaflex recycled rubber products.

A complete announcement of the expansion is expected this fall, Bonforte said.

Company founder John M. Bonforte Sr. said his original decision to seek ISO certification diverged from the motivation often cited by other manufacturers. While many companies pursue ISO as a path to gain business from auto makers, Monmouth sought a different benefit.

“In a small company, where you feel like one big family, it’s sometimes hard for the owner to instill, inflict, enforce the necessary discipline,” Bonforte Sr. explained. “But ISO provides an independent opinion as to what a company’s internal discipline should be”.

When you adhere to ISO standards, everybody works from the same sheet of music, supplied by a third party that speaks with authority and without bias,” he said.

ISO certification has changed the whole character of our business,” Bonforte Jr. said. In fact, Monmouth has become so committed to the international standards that it invites an independent ISO auditor, Rick Casswell, to visit the company each month and provide feedback on Monmouth’s success at adhering to the standards.


Monmouth Poised to Capitalize on Growing Demand for U.S. Manufacturing

A resurging demand for U.S. manufacturing is the hot topic in industry right now, and our tried-and-true business model has put Monmouth right in the thick of things.

We’re well positioned to take advantage of the renewed interest in U.S. manufacturing because of our:

  • Regular investments in state-of-the-art technology and equipment
  • Low overhead
  • Ability to multi-task
  • Commitment to maintaining a manageable business size
  • Thanks to these strategies, we’ve already been able to capture new production orders that formerly went to overseas manufacturers.

    The increased demand for U.S. manufacturing is driven by concerns over quality of products made overseas, as well as realizations that rising shipping costs and lag times make American factories a more efficient and cost-effective source of products and materials.

    The resurgence of U.S. manufacturing was highlighted by news reports earlier this year of Wham-O shifting production of its Frisbee and Hula Hoop from China back to the U.S. We’ve also witnessed automotive suppliers moving production from Asia back to U.S. and looking to source their gasketing material locally.

    All of these developments herald good news for manufacturers who’ve prepared as we have by:

  • Investing in product innovation and development
  • Maintaining in-house product testing
  • Lowering – or even eliminating – corporate debt
  • Cultivating a well-balanced customer base
  • Contact John Bonforte Jr. at 1-888-3626, ext. 29, for information on how you can benefit from our ability to adapt to today’s dynamic global economy.


    New Owner Takes Control of Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp.

    LONG BRANCH, NJ – The final phase of Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corporation’s succession plan was completed January 1 with John M. Bonforte Jr’s assumption of the roles of president and COO of the sponge rubber and plastic foam manufacturer.

    Formerly Monmouth’s sales manager, Bonforte took over the company’s day-to-day operations in early 2010. He had begun his Monmouth career as a high school student, working the second shift after school and during summer breaks. Bonforte became the company’s sales manager in 2004, with responsibilities for sales, quality and customer service.

    “A carefully devised and well-executed succession plan ensures the longevity of any company,” Bonforte said. “And longevity is a major key to corporate success.”

    The change of ownership coincides with Monmouth’s increasing significantly its production capacity.

    “Monmouth already is a leader in the manufacturing of closed cell sponge rubber and plastic foam. The increased capacity will further solidify Monmouth’s leadership position in the market,” Bonforte said.

    “The other critical element in our continued success is our technical support,” company founder John M. Bonforte Sr. said. “As other closed cell sponge rubber and plastic foam manufacturers shut down, a significant need persists for the kind of extensive technical expertise and knowledge that only we have.

    “Our technical support is second to none – and available to anyone with a serious interest in our industry,” said John Sr., who will remain with Monmouth as general manager and technical director.

    Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp. successfully completed their ISO 9001:2008 surveillance audit.

    Long Branch, NJ — Monmouth Rubber & Plastics Corp. announced today they have successfully completed their ISO 9001:2008 surveillance audit. The overall evaluation of the audit was positive with several opportunities to improve the system with the main purpose of customer satisfaction.

    Monmouth QMS has been certified to this international standard since 2008 by SGS, one of the most recognized certification bodies for management systems worldwide. Yudhana Petchmanee conducted the audit and covered all the elements required by the standard.

    Mr. Petchmanee met with our team, from Quality and Lab Testing, to Customer Service, Office Management/Purchasing, and Production Managers. Some of the elements he reviewed in detail were procedures, documentation, and improvement initiatives. Also, he provided recommendations towards the future implementation of the new ISO 9001 2015 version once the final revision is available.

    Monmouth Rubber & Plastics main commitment to customers is to continually improve all the aspects of our organization with the main focus of providing a quality product that not only satisfies your requirements, but exceeds them. We recognize that continual improvement is a road without end, and every employee in MRPC is committed to that guiding principle.

    Monmouth Rubber was established 51 years ago by John Bonforte Sr., an authority in the closed cell industry and highly recognized by his technical expertise. Since 2011 his son John Bonforte Jr. took over the company leadership in the roles of president and COO  providing a refreshed vision and impulse to grow and improve even more.

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