PVC suppliers delay price increase
AKRON, OHIO — Major PVC manufacturers have turned a 2 cent increase slated for May 1 into separate 1 cent increases effective June 1 and July 1.
Several manufacturers, including Formosa Plastics Corp. USA of Point Comfort, Texas; Geon Co. of Avon Lake, Ohio; Westlake Polymers of Houston; Occidental Chemical Co. of Dallas; Condea Vista Chemical Co. of Houston; and Shintech Inc. of Houston, had attempted the May 1 increase because of the rising costs of vinyl chloride feedstocks.
Representatives from Condea Vista, Westlake and Shintech said last week they were following Formosa's lead on the pricing move. Formosa officials did not return calls seeking comment.
An industry source in Houston said some Shintech customers that already were billed for the 2 cent May increase will receive credit on future resin purchases.
Condea Vista sales manager Charlie Matson said cold, wet weather had been affecting PVC sales by limiting construction work. Better weather should give the June and July price hikes better chances of sticking, he said.
``We're starting to see the results of real spring weather,'' Matson said. ``That's what everybody's been waiting for. Now our customers can get their sales restored.''
Royal Group, CTB planning vinyl venture
TORONTO — CTB Inc. and Royal Group Technologies Ltd. of Toronto are negotiating a possible joint venture to make extruded vinyl agricultural products.
CTB recently agreed to sell Royal its extruded vinyl building products assets in Milford, Ind. The firms expect to complete that deal by mid-June.
CTB spokeswoman Susan Hight said her firm extrudes tubing and other components for agricultural feeding, water and ventilation systems. She said CTB and extrusion major Royal still are discussing what products they might make in a joint venture.
Hight said most of Milford's extrusion equipment makes building products like fencing, and deck and dock components, and is slated to be sold to Royal. She did not disclose the number of extruders CTB runs at Milford, its headquarters plant. The firm also injection molds agricultural components there.
CTB operates a wire mesh fabrication plant in Decatur, Ala., and has sales offices in Holland and Brazil. Hight did not disclose sales for the 900-employee firm.
Molder gets big tax breaks in Mass.
LEOMINSTER, MASS. — Proprietary houseswares molder United Plastics Corp. will be eligible for tax breaks worth about $956,000 as it expands in Leominster.
Leominster City Council voted unanimously May 12 to offer United tax breaks as it expands during the next 11 years, to ensure that the company stays in Leominster, Ned Murray, city planning director, said in a telephone interview.
Officials said United plans to spend about $17 million on the program, which will add 391,000 square feet of manufacturing and warehouse space and 66 jobs to its current staff of 120. United, with 69,000 square feet of space, expects to complete the first of four expansion phases next year. United officials did not respond to requests for more details on the project.
Leominster officials decided to forgo a portion of property taxes United would have had to pay on its extra space. The firm's tax increment financing plan is the largest officials have negotiated under the year-old Massachusetts Economic Development Incentive Program.
Murray said United's annual sales are about $15 million.
Styrene groups from global alliance
WASHINGTON—The Washington-based Styrene Information and Research Center and its European and Japanese counterparts have decided to meet formally twice a year to trade information.
SIRC, the Japan Styrene Industry Association and its European partner, the Styrene Steering Committee, had their first meeting March 26 in San Antonio, said Jack Snyder, SIRC deputy director. SIRC is part of Washington-based Society of the Plastics Industry Inc.
The International Styrene Industry Forum will not have any staff and its members will meet in conjunction with other industry meetings. SIRC will provide administrative support, while the forum will supply updates on health effects and regulation.
The forum eventually wants to expand into Latin America and Asia, according to Snyder.