The owners of Craig Technologies, a Delaware plastics manufacturer, have acquired a majority stake in Salisbury-based Manufacturing Support Industries Inc. and plan to hire 42 workers there as part of a three-year expansion plan.

Under the deal, Craig Technologies President Don Hollenbeck and his two business partners acquired 90 percent of MSI's stock, with MSI President Robert Correa retaining 10 percent. MSI will operate as an independent affiliate of Craig Technologies. Financial terms were not disclosed.


Founded in 1998, MSI engineers and manufactures high-precision weaponry components for the military. In addition to the Department of Defense, MSI's clients include Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman.

The deal allows Craig Technologies, which primarily manufactures precision plastic balls for bearings and valves, to expand into government contracting.

For MSI, the affiliation expands the company's capabilities, broadening the variety of government contracts MSI can bid on to include projects that require plastic components, Hollenbeck said.

Over the next three years, Craig Technologies plans to integrate its product lines at MSI's facility and move from a single-shift manufacturing schedule to a three-shift schedule. MSI expects to add 42 workers to its staff of 10 to accommodate the expanded schedule.

The state's Department of Commerce approved a $100,000 conditional loan through the Maryland Economic Development Assistance Authority and Fund to support project costs. The Salisbury-Wicomico Economic Development Corporation is providing an additional $100,000 loan.

"It brought a lot of talent together ... that will make it a much stronger engineering company," Hollenbeck said. "It's really just going to expand our operations for both companies. It's going to add business on both sides."

Craig Technologies has about 60 employees at its Seaford, Del., headquarters and manufacturing facility.

Correa, MSI's president, will stay on with the company until he retires, which he said he plans to do in a few years.

When he retires, the owners of Craig Technologies will take over his 10 percent share.

"We have always been proud to produce quality components for the Department of Defense," said Correa in a statement. "These investments will allow us to continue this important work well into the future."