TORONTO — Agra Industries Ltd. has completed the sale of its Agra Plastics Inc. plastic bottle blow molding operation in Missis-sauga, Ontario, to Yorkbridge Capital Management Corp. of Toronto. Agra will retain a 25 percent interest in the operation. Yorkbridge will infuse capital into the blow molding business, according to David Paterson, Agra Industries vice president of corporate affairs. Yorkbridge, a private investment firm with interests in small and medium-size companies, arranges financing for management buyouts.
Keith Ratcliff, who will continue as Agra Plastics' president, said the company plans to spend C$3.2 million (US$2.4 million), on expansion next year. It will boost capacity for single-stage PET bottle blow molding and add ``generic-bottle'' blow molding equipment. Yorkbridge's expansion intentions also include acquisitions, Ratcliff said in a telephone interview. Agra Plastics now runs Husky and MAG machinery.
Agra Plastics has 23 blow molding machines mainly using polyethylene, PET and PVC to make containers ranging from 4 milliliters to 2 liters. Its major markets include hospitality, personal care, household products and food. It had sales of $10.2 million for the year ended July 31, 1995, according to Plastics News' most recent blow molding ranking. Ratcliff said his firm also distributes bottle closures that are custom made by an undisclosed supplier.
Officials did not disclose terms of the deal, but Agra Industries said in a Nov. 11 news release that it will have an after-tax gain of about C$1 million (US$750,000) and net cash proceeds after payment of debt of about C$6 million (US$4.5 million).
Agra Industries announced last summer its plan to sell the bottle business — its last plastics operation — to concentrate on core operations in engineering and construction. In July it sold its Edmonton, Alberta, plastic recycling and PET sheet operation to Silverdale Corp. of Calgary, Alberta.