Since the 1996 blow molders ranking was published Nov. 4, several significant acquisitions have occurred. Schmalbach-Lubeca purchas-ed the Plastic Container Division of Johnson Controls Inc. for an estimated $650 million. The deal, which is set to close next month, will make Schmalbach the world leader in PET blow molding, with sales close to $1.3 billion.
Schmalbach, located in Ratingen, Germany, is the European leader in food and beverage packaging. The firm will acquire JCI's Novi, Mich., recycling facility as part of the deal. Not included is JCI's Plastic Machinery Division.
Milwaukee-based JCI sold the unit to finance part of the debt incurred with the acquisition of Prince Automotive in Holland, Mich. JCI purchased Prince in October for $1.35 billion in order to solidify and expand its automotive division.
JCI had global food and beverage bottle sales of about $800 million. It ranked second in Plastics News' 1996 survey of North American blow molders with estimated sales of $662 million.
Sonoco Products Co. signed a letter of intent to sell its PET plastic container operation in Green-ville, S.C., to Ring Can Corp., a manufacturer of blow molded products. Terms of the sale were not disclosed.
The Greenville plant has 25 employees and makes tennis ball containers. Ring Can, located in Oakland, Tenn., has 29 plants with 900 employees and sales of $110 million. The firm ranked No. 16 in Plastics News' 1996 Blow Molders Ranking.
Hartsville, S.C.-based Sonoco had estimated blow molding sales of $41 million, placing the company at No. 36. Company officials cited lack of compatability with other product lines as the reason for the sale.
Arcadia, Calif.-based Reid Plastics Inc. bought Atlantis Plastics Inc.'s blow molding subsidiary, Plastic Containers Inc. in Demopolis, Ala. The sale will boost Reid's sales beyond its estimated $100 million last year, which placed the company at No. 17 in the ranking. Terms of the sale were not released.
Plastic Containers had sales of less than $25 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 1994. The firm blow molded high density polyethylene dairy, water, juice and industrial containers. Reid blow molds bottles and water cooler jugs.
Quickly following that deal, Ball Corp. bought the assets of PET blow molder Brunswick Container for $30 million from Honickman Group of Philadelphia. With estimated sales of $36 million, the purchase of Brunswick enhances Ball's PET bottle production.
Ball, which entered the PET bottle market this year, has one plant under construction and two newly acquired plants, one in South Hill, Va., and the other in East Brunswick, N.J. Ball, however, will be closing the East Brunswick plant.
Start-up company Custom PlasTech Ltd. acquired a plant from Chagrin Falls, Ohio-based Lobo Containers Inc. In addition to blow molding hazardous materials containers as Lobo had, the firm makes hotel and hospital cart panels, traffic control barrels and personal watercraft docking systems. Custom PlasTech has 16 employees and two machines.