Chippewa County’s Lake Wissota Business Park is now the home of Nordson EDI. What began in 1971 with a five-person machine shop in this small city of 14,000 is now Nordson Corporation’s global EDI® brand, recognized worldwide for advanced engineering and precision workmanship in the production of flat dies for film, sheet, and coating. Nordson acquired a company-Extrusion Dies Incorporated in 2012 and spent 2019 and 2020 consolidating their three EDI operations in Chippewa Falls into an extensive new modern manufacturing facility. In 2021, the EDI team celebrates its the 50th anniversary of the EDI business which began on February 15, 1971- the day of its founding.
Nordson EDI has been a long-time supporter of the communities within the Chippewa Valley and of Chippewa County Economic Development Corporation (CCEDC) and their mission to be a catalyst for economic development. Last year Nordson completed construction of the new world headquarters, a 145,000 sq. ft. facility within the Lake Wissota Business Park, not far from where the three operating EDI businesses were. The new state of the art facility houses operations for manufacturing, engineering, aftermarket service, sales, technical support, R&D, and laboratory trials. It includes new, advanced manufacturing equipment that streamlines workflow and produces dies with tighter tolerances, and a communications platform that permits close collaboration with other EDI teams around the world. The Chippewa Falls Wisconsin plant is still the world headquarters for the EDI brand. Today, manufacturing facilities in the US, Germany, Japan, and China support the brand, as do sales and technical service staff located in these and other countries. The global EDI team consists of over 350 employees.
One of the variables which makes Nordson so successful are the many EDI team members, both in Chippewa Falls and at overseas locations. In the Chippewa Falls area, historic companies such as Johnson Manufacturing, helped gave rise to a large pool of qualified hardworking metalworkers. Instilled with a top-notch work ethic-one that still exists- talent resources exist to facilitate its growth. Local colleges such as Chippewa Valley Technical College have also helped to expand the area’s technical workforce. Nordson EDI continues to support and draw on these resources and continues tradition of improving the areas talent.
“Critical to the success of the EDI brand has been the expertise and dedication of the engineers, machinists, technicians, and customer service staff that we employ around the world,” said Scott Smith, Nordson’s business unit director for EDI. “This team has built our reputation for reliability and quality, and it has generated many innovations, from the automatic system for thickness control introduced in the 1970s to diverse advances in sheet, film, and coating dies introduced just since the Nordson acquisition.”