Michigan executive William Pickard and Canadian firm Ventra Group Inc. have arranged to continue the operations of automotive supplier J.P. Emco Inc. in Ada, Okla.
Crisis management team BBK Ltd. of Southfield, Mich., has been operating Emco for General Motors Corp. as debtor in possession since October, said BBK's Doug Edwards. Emco filed Oct. 17 for protection from creditors under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.
A joint venture of Pickard and Ventra agreed ``to acquire specific assets'' of Emco, a Tier 1 supplier of plastic components. The deal is scheduled to close Aug. 19 and involves land, buildings, machinery, equipment and inventory. A final hearing on the bankruptcy issues occurred Aug. 5.
The venture, known as Camrose Technologies LLC, was formed to operate as a minority-business enterprise. Pickard, chairman, chief executive officer and majority owner of Regal Plastics Co. in Roseville, Mich., owns 51 percent of the venture; and Ventra Group, a Cambridge, Ontario-based plastic and metal auto parts producer, owns 49 percent.
Emco employs 385, occupies three buildings on 46 acres and has annual sales of about $32 million. A new 88,000-square-foot paint facility opened in September. An injection molding facility, warehouse and offices occupy 150,000 square feet, and a building for shipping, materials handling and receiving covers 110,000 square feet.
Emco was founded in 1984 and has one HPM, five Impco and seven Farrel presses with clamping forces of 1,500-2,500 tons, said Keith Hildreth, industrial relations manager. The operation makes painted fascias and rockers for the Chevy Malibu and Oldsmobile Cutlass models that GM assembles in Oklahoma City. Also, Emco makes other GM components.
Ventra Group was founded in 1979, employs more than 1,900 and operates 13 manufacturing facilities in Canada, the United States, Mexico, Spain and South America. The firm designs and makes parts for the car and truck industries.
Ventra had sales of US$233.7 million for the year ended Sept. 30, and US$162.3 million for the previous fiscal year. Ventra ranked 55th in an April 1997 Plastics News ranking with North American injection molding sales of US$87.6 million.
Pickard's firm is one of the largest minority-owned molders in the automotive supply industry. Regal Plastics had 1996 sales of $42 million.