Bakrupt Mac to sell blow molding assets
WASHINGTON, PA. — Industrial blow molder Mac Plastics Inc. of Washington is under protection of Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code and plans to sell its equipment, the firm's lawyer said in a March 12 interview.
Mac, which filed Feb. 6 for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, recently converted to Chapter 11, said Stanley Levine of Pittsburgh. The company ``hopes to find a buyer to keep the assets as a group and deploy them for manufacturing plastics [products] in the Washington area,'' Levine said. Mac plans to sell its assets within 40 days in a bankruptcy court sale, he added.
Mac owed about $6 million to National City Bank and about $6 million to unsecured creditors when it filed for Chapter 7.
Mac reported 1996 blow molding sales of $34 million, making it the 16th-largest industrial blow molder in Plastics News' most recent survey of North American blow molders.
Borden paying $7 million in PVC suit
WASHINGTON — Borden Chemicals & Plastics LP has agreed to pay $7 million to settle a U.S. Department of Justice lawsuit alleging that its PVC plant in Geismar, La., contaminated soil and ground water.
The settlement — the largest in Louisiana for a federal hazardous waste violation — came after two days of trial in U.S. District Court in Baton Rouge, according to a March 11 Justice Department statement.
Borden will pay a $3.6 million civil penalty and spend $3.4 million on environmental projects, including several million dollars to clean up and prevent the spread of contamination to a nearby drinking water aquifer, and $400,000 to help the community respond to environmental emergencies.
A Justice Department statement also said Borden will ``begin abiding by a federal law that regulates the handling and storage of wastes,'' after the company said it was not required to get a permit under those laws.
A Borden spokesman characterized the case as a disagreement about whether some very technical regulations applied to the Geismar plant, and came about after the company reported problems to officials. The government originally sought $150 million in fines, Borden said.
The plant also makes urea, ammonia, methanol and PVC intermediates.
Former VPs suing Tikes for damages
HUDSON, OHIO — Two former vice presidents being sued by Little Tikes Co. have filed counterclaims asserting that the firm is interfering with their business relations.
Kevin Aker, a former vice president of product design, and Kevin Curran, a former marketing executive at the Hudson-based toy maker, are asking for $50,000 in damages and deny any charges of improper behavior.
Little Tikes accused both in its 1997 suit of violating employee confidentiality agreements. All the suits were filed in Summit County Common Pleas Court in Akron, Ohio.
``This is about corporate espionage,'' said Lorrie Paul Crum, a spokeswoman for Little Tikes' Wooster, Ohio, parent, Rubbermaid Inc. ``We intend to fight to win.''
Akers and Curran were hired in July by Fisher-Price Co. of East Aurora, N.Y., where they joined another Little Tikes alumnus, Gary Baughman. Baughman, president of Little Tikes from 1990-94, was named president of Fisher-Price in March 1997.
Crocker investing $2 million in Mich.
THREE RIVERS, MICH. — Crocker Ltd., a Three Rivers-based blow molder, is investing more than $2 million to expand its Coldwater, Mich., plant and add a dual-head, 25-pound shot and single-head, 40-pound shot machine to its manufacturing lines.
The additional equipment, manufactured by Graham Engineering Corp. of York, Pa., gives Crocker a total of eight blow molding machines at the Coldwater plant. It will be placed in the facility's 15,000-square-foot addition. The building's original layout provided 24,000 square feet of space.
The expansion will help Crocker accommodate an expected 25 percent sales growth this year, said Tina Hochstetler, the firm's administrative director. Crocker also operates a 100,000-square-foot plant in Three Rivers and a 20,000-square-foot facility in Centreville, Mich.
The firm, which serves several industries, recorded 1997 sales of $15 million and employs 250, Hochstetler said.