A Web site featuring a plastics graveyard tracks changes in the industry.
In today’s constantly changing business climate, it can be difficult to keep track of mergers, name changes, and defunct businesses in a given industry. One company is trying to make this task a little easier. IDES (Laramie, WY; www.ides.com), a plastic materials information management company, has compiled this type of information onto a section of its Web site.
Dubbed the plastics graveyard, the site lists changes in names or ownership of companies and products. Also included on the site are companies and products that are no longer in existence. These “dead” items are flagged with a tombstone that reads RIP and documents the product or company’s life span.
Companies can even purchase an image of a flower that appears in memoriam next to a departed company’s information. Clicking on the flower leads to alternative plastic options to replace the deceased’s products.
Though the plastics graveyard presents information in a whimsical way, it can serve as a useful tool. The report functions as a reference regarding changes in the industry. The most recent names or products of the companies listed link to IDES’s search engine.
“Our customers often refer to us as the Google for plastics,” says Nathan Potter, marketing manager for IDES. “One of the services we provide is a search engine that outputs only plastics sites.” Through the search engine, users can scour results to find desired information. In the case of a discontinued product line, this tool helps users seek out replacement resins suited to their application needs.
The plastics graveyard also serves as a community forum of sorts. The site encourages people to submit relevant information not reflected on the site. Through collaboration, IDES hopes to have the most up-to-date information on the plastics industry.
“It’s ironic because it is fairly new, but right off the bat the plastics graveyard helped several design engineers who were having trouble with discontinued products,” Potter says. “Companies that are using a plastic material that has been discontinued or will be discontinued can use this report to see who has or will replace the product.”