Aeroquip Corp. announced May 18 that it will close its Henderson, Ky., automotive molding facility by Sept. 1 if it does not find a buyer for the 36-press plant. The volume of current and future sales booked for the plant is too low to keep it running, Dan Kimmet, group vice president of the Aeroquip Automotive Group, said in a prepared statement.
``The Henderson facility is a fine plant with a strong, dedicated work force,'' he said. ``We hope to find a buyer who sees opportunities for this plant.''
An Aeroquip spokesman, citing company policy, declined to identify the automakers that are purchasing molded parts from the plant.
However, in a Plastics News story published last year, Aeroquip discussed work it was doing for General Motors Corp. in Henderson. The company was molding instrument panels for the Buick Roadmaster.
On May 16, GM announced it will end production of the Roadmaster and three other large, rear-wheel-drive models by the end of the 1996 model year.
The Henderson plant, built in 1946 and renovated in 1984, was acquired by Aeroquip in 1987 from Kusan Manufacturing Corp. The facility employs about 290.
The clamping forces used on the presses at Henderson range from 66-2,200 tons. The plant also makes a variety of molded parts besides instrument panels, including consoles, glove box assemblies and interior trim.
In April, Aeroquip Automotive was 18th in Plastic News' ranking of top North American injection molders with molding-related sales of $158.3 million. In the survey, the company listed 11 plants and a total of 170 presses.
Aeroquip, and parent Trinova Corp., are based in Maumee, Ohio.