JPE Inc. entered the automotive plastic extrusions market with its Dec. 13 purchase of Starboard Industries Inc. of Auburn Hills, Mich. About 10 percent of Starboard's production is coextruded plastic and metal parts for automotive original equipment manufacturers, according to Craig Homan, vice president and chief financial officer for Ann Arbor, Mich.-based JPE.
Starboard's coextrusions are used in wheel wells and fender wells.
Starboard, which was established in 1970, reported 1994 sales of about $31 million. Most of its output is metal automotive components.
Homan would not reveal terms of the deal, but said his firm paid cash for Starboard stock.
The acquisition was made effective retroactive to Sept. 30.
Homan said in a telephone interview that his firm plans to expand Starboard's plastic coex-trusion operation in Tawas, Mich., if Starboard is successful in bids for new work.
He added that Starboard may add a second coextrusion line next year at a cost of about $250,000.
Starboard officials were unavailable for comment.
Homan said JPE is interested in acquiring other automotive plastics operations in extrusion and injection molding to complement its existing businesses.
``We have prospects,'' he said, but he declined to disclose potential acquisition targets.
JPE will keep Starboard management and operate the company as Starboard Industries Inc., a JPE company.
Starboard has 280 employees and also has a plant in East Tawas, Mich.
JPE, publicly traded on Nasdaq, had sales of $45.6 million for the nine months ended Sept. 30.
Profit for the period was $2.5 million.
Its operations in Harrisburg, Pa., and St. Louis produce and distribute metal truck and auto parts for the aftermarket and sale to OEMs.