The company was reorganized in 1935 as U.S. Automatic Corporation and, under the direction of Walter G. Nord, shifted its production emphasis to lower-volume, high-precision parts that were critical in supporting the United States' defense effort during World War II.
In the years following the war, Mr. Nord, along with sons Eric and Evan, searched for a proprietary product to serve as a basis for future growth. This resulted in the acquisition of patents covering the "hot airless" method of spraying paint and other coating materials. The Nordson Division of U.S. Automatic Corporation was founded in 1954 to produce and market airless spray equipment.
In the mid 1960s, Nordson's experience in heated coatings technology led to the development of equipment to apply thermoplastic adhesives, commonly called hot melts, for case sealing, cartoning and product assembly operations.
In 1966, the entire U.S. Automatic operation was merged into the subsidiary, Nordson Corporation. Later, the addition of air-atomized spray painting systems, and the incorporation of highly efficient electrostatics in airless, air-atomized and rotary-atomized painting processes, established Nordson as a technological leader in the paint finishing industry.
Beginning in the late 1960s, Nordson pioneered the technology and equipment for applying powder coatings with the development of the compact and efficient cartridge-type recovery/recycle systems. Nordson has continually refined its cartridge-booth technology and is an innovator in all aspects of the powder coating process. Recent advancements include specialized equipment for applying environmentally compatible liquid coatings such as waterborne and super-critical fluid coatings.
The company's continued growth is based on a customer-driven strategy that is global in scope. With this in mind, Nordson began an aggressive campaign in the late 1980s to acquire companies that would strengthen its position as a leader in technology, product quality and customer service. Since then, Nordson has acquired 10 companies that helped to enhance its adhesive dispensing product line and expand its presence in emerging high-technology markets. Nordson expanded its hot melt adhesive dispensing business with the acquisitions of Meltex (Lüneburg, Germany) and Slautterback Corporation (Monterey, California), incorporating the latest technological advancements in heating, dispensing and electronic controls. By acquiring VeriTec Technologies (Fairfield, New Jersey), a manufacturer of cold-adhesive dispensing equipment, Nordson broadened its abilities to serve a complete range of needs for product assembly, packaging and converting applications worldwide. This equipment - ranging from manual to fully automated systems - accommodates a wide variety of materials and production requirements in high-speed, high-volume manufacturing environments. In the nonwovens market, Nordson acquired J&M Laboratories, Inc. (Dawsonville, Georgia), a manufacturer of melt-blowing systems used to produce synthetic nonwoven fabrics and adhesive dispensing equipment for the assembly of diapers, medical disposables and feminine hygiene products. The acquisition merged J&M's meltblown and spun-bond technologies with Nordson's existing nonwovens capabilities, creating an integrated network of applications and streamlining service.
In the late 1990s, Nordson focused its acquisition efforts on companies with histories of above-average financial performance that would expand its presence in emerging high-technology markets. From 1996 to 2000, the company made strategic acquisitions in this key segment, adding ultraviolet (UV) curing capabilities from Spectral Technology Group (Slough, United Kingdom) and Horizon Lamps, Inc. (Phillipsburg, New Jersey); gas plasma technologies from March Instruments, Inc. (Concord, California) and Advanced Plasma Systems (St. Petersburg, Florida); and precision dispensing equipment for the electronics, medical and fiber optics industries with the acquisitions of Asymtek (Carlsbad, California) and EFD, Inc. (East Providence, Rhode Island).
The company's strategy for long-term growth is based on a customer-driven focus that is global in scope. Headquartered in Westlake, Ohio, Nordson markets its products through a network of direct operations in over 30 countries throughout North America, Europe, Japan, Asia, Latin America and Australia. Consistent with this strategy, more than two-thirds of the company's revenues are generated outside the United States, and the company employs over 4000 people worldwide.
- Major manufacturing, research and development facilities: Alabama, California, Georgia, Ohio, Rhode Island, China, Germany, The Netherlands, and the United Kingdom
- Worldwide operations: Direct operations and sales support offices in over 30 countries; working relationships with more than 165 distributor organizations expanding worldwide presence to 57 countries
- Markets served: Appliance, automotive, bookbinding, circuit board assembly, electronics, food and beverage, furniture, medical, metal finishing, nonwovens products, packaging, semiconductor, telecommunicationsand other diverse industries.