DALLAS - R. Carter Pate, 41, president and chief executive officer of Sun Coast Industries Inc. since April 1993, resigned citing ``differences in philosophy over future direction,'' the company said Feb. 6. Until a successor is named, former president James Miller, 69, will serve as interim CEO and president, according to venture-capital investor board chairman Stephen P. Smiley.
Sun Coast makes plastic caps and closures, melamine tableware and dinnerware, and specialty melamine and urea resins.
Sun Coast reported a loss of $339,000, or 8 cents per share, on revenue of $18.6 million for the fiscal second quarter ending Dec. 31. Sun Coast had a profit of $855,000, or 21 cents per share, on revenue of $21.3 million for the year-earlier quarter.
Cynthia Morris, chief financial officer, said Sun Coast is exploring various long-term strategies in the face of high raw materials costs, slow development of new products and delays in moving some manufacturing operations to its Mexico City subsidiary Nova Plast SA de CV, which was acquired in May.
She said the Dallas-based company had positive cash flow, repaid $1.5 million in debt principal since June 30 and negotiated ``a new and expanded credit facility'' in December.
Advanstar denies reports of sale talks
NEW YORK - Advanstar Communications Inc. is denying reports that United Dutch Publications, known as VNU, is in negotiations to buy Advanstar.
VNU is the Dutch parent of Bill Communications Inc., which publishes Plastics Technology and other magazines. Advanstar, based in Middleburg Heights, Ohio, is a trade show organizer and trade magazine publisher.
According to stories in the Feb. 5 editions of Advertising Age and Crain's Cleveland Business, both sister publications of Plastics News, executives familiar with the talks said they have gone beyond the preliminary stage.
Advanstar's next plastics show, Plastics Fair Dallas, runs this week, Feb. 13-15.
An Advanstar spokewoman said negotiations have not taken place with VNU or any other potential buyer. Bill officials were unavailable for comment Feb. 8.
Advanstar announced Jan. 12 that it was on the selling block. Advanstar retained Goldman, Sachs and & Co. to handle the sale. Advanstar publishes 55 business publications and holds 54 expositions and conferences.
New York-based Bill Communications has been owned by VNU since mid-1994.
Advanstar closed its plastics magazines in 1994: Plastics Machinery & Equipment, Plastics Design Forum; Plastics Compounding and Advanced Composites.
Workers at Well Plastics on strike
HAUPPAUGE, N.Y. - Workers at Wess Plastics Inc., a Hauppauge injection molder of lenses, slides and other plastic products for the medical industry, are on strike.
The workers, represented by Local 202 of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, walked out Jan. 29, after they could not reach agreement on a new contract to replace one that expired in October.
Allen Breslow, a lawyer representing the company, said the impasse revolves around Wess Plastics' desire to replace the union's health plan with what it claimed was a less-expensive provider; its offer of cash payments to any worker who would opt out of the health-care plan; and over ``union security'' provisions, which call for new employees to join the union after 30 days on the job, and deductions of their union initiation fees and dues.
The 30-40 employees make $5-$10 per hour.
``Wages were not a problem,'' Breslow said. ``The union sought wage increases, and wage increases of about 25 cents per hour were negotiated.''
Joe Byers, president of Local 202, agreed that wages were not the issue, but that the company's claims were a ``smoke screen'' for its intent to break the union.
``Union security clauses' are pretty standard operating procedure for unions,'' he said. ``I doubt you'd find any other place where it was an issue, but this company is adamant about it. We also proved to a federal mediator that our health plan was less expensive than the outside providers, if similar services were provided. We think this is pretty obviously an attempt to weaken and ultimately get rid of the union.''