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Vinyl window, siding expansions slated

HUNTINGTON, W.VA.—West Virginia is cashing in on expansions in vinyl construction products, with two window fabrication plants planned, and a siding plant expansion nearly completed.

SNE Enterprises Inc. will open a window fabrication plant in Huntington. The Mosinee, Wis., firm said it will lease a 285,000-square-foot building and equip it at an undisclosed cost to serve new construction, home and light commercial renovation markets. The facility will source vinyl profiles from undisclosed suppliers, according to a spokesman for Ply Gem Industries Inc., SNE's parent company. SNE has no plan to extrude its own window profiles for any of its plants, the spokesman said.

SNE expects to employ about 100 at Huntington when the facility opens late this year. Officials did not disclose capacity.

The spokesman said a $5 million expansion of another Ply Gem subsidiary, Variform Inc., is on schedule. The vinyl siding producer is expanding capacity at Martinsburg, W.Va., and Jasper, Tenn.

In Ellenboro, W.Va., Simonton Windows will build a 183,000-square-foot window fabricating facility by the fall of this year. The division of Simonton Building Products Inc. of Parkersburg designs its profiles but contracts out extrusion to undisclosed firms. It supplies replacement and new-construction windows.

The company also named Mike Coyne vice president of sales.

Tetra cuts jobs in Mo., expands in Ore.

ST. CHARLES, MO. — Tetra Plastics Inc. reduced its St. Charles work force by one-third, but has no plans to move St. Charles operations to a new facility being built in Hillsboro, Ore., according to an official.

Tetra, a unit of Nike Inc., cut 30 jobs at St. Charles and laid off another 94 people May 22 as sales of some Nike shoes slumped. Before the cutback the plant employed 385.

Most of the affected workers made blow molded air cushions. Nike spokesman Lee Weinstein said Tetra recently hired more workers than it needed based on current sales, and it might recall some workers within four months.

Tetra's St. Charles operation mainly makes parts for Nike shoes, but about 15 percent of its work is custom for automotive and recreational markets. Weinstein was unable to provide an update on Nike's plans to build a $20 million plant for Tetra and other operations in Hillsboro. Nike acquired Tetra in 1991.

Hoechst plans nylon resin price hikes

WARREN, N.J. — Hoechst Corp. has joined the growing list of manufacturers that plan to raise nylon prices.

The Warren firm said it will increase prices of its Celanese nylon 6/6 unfilled and high-viscosity-grade resins 6 percent effective June 2. Prices for its other nylon resins will climb by 10 percent. Celanese nylon business director Thomas Heaney blamed higher raw materials costs for the increase.

DuPont Co. of Wilmington, Del.; Monsanto Co. of St. Louis and BASF Corp. of Mount Olive, N.J., announced similar price increases in late April and early May. DuPont's announced effective date was May 1, Monsanto's was May 15 and BASF's was June 1.

Toter sues Calif. town over garbage can

STATESVILLE, N.C. — Toter Inc. of Statesville is suing the city of Visalia, Calif., and Ruckstell California Sales Inc. over what it claims is a violation of a patent for a garbage can. A date had not been set for the case in U.S. District Court in Fresno, Calif.

The can is divided to keep recyclables and trash separated. Visalia has special trucks to collect the organized waste.

Toter, primarily a rotomolder of garbage cans, filed for a utility patent in 1989, and received it in 1994. Visalia has had a design patent on the can since 1993.

Fresno-based Ruckstell California Sales manufactures and sells the cans to other cities; Visalia collects a $2 royalty for each can, according to Morgan Foley, Visalia city attorney. A Ruckstell spokesman declined to comment.

Ciriello takes Shape Inc. reins as CEO

PORTSMOUTH, N.H.—Injection molder Shape Inc., a supplier to the media and computer industries, has a new chief executive officer.

Peter W. Ciriello, 43, became CEO in April, replacing Thomas Parkinson, 50, who is leaving to pursue other interests, Shape said. Ciriello was general manager of Kao Infosystems Co. of Plymouth, Mass. Kao makes personal-care, chemical, and information products.