Hobbs succeeds Benton as Trend CEO
SAN JOSE, CALIF. — Computer enclosure maker Trend Technologies Inc. named William B.R. Hobbs president and chief executive officer, effective Aug. 3.
As CEO, he succeeds Stuart Benton, who took the position on a short-term basis following an ownership change in March 1997, Benton said in a July 30 telephone interview. Benton remains board chairman of San Jose-based Trend.
As president, Hobbs succeeds Joseph Jahn, who resigned July 24 to pursue other interests. Jahn was also chief operating officer.
Hobbs, 48, held senior executive positions with wire-and-cable maker Bridon plc from 1986-97, most recently as COO and a director. He had responsibility for 43 businesses in 21 countries and was instrumental in the strategy and implementation leading to Bridon's sale last year to FKI plc of Halifax, England. Hobbs is relocating to the San Jose area from Shavertown, Pa.
Benton said Trend is on the verge of acquiring metal stamper and computer enclosure maker Ballymount Precision Engineering Ltd. of Dublin, Ireland. Ballymount employs 300, has sales of about $30 million and will become Trend's first operation outside the United States.
Trend employs 1,500, excluding Ballymount, and had 1997 sales of about $120 million. It projects 1998 sales of $250 million.
Utah Medical buys neonatal product lines
MIDVALE, UTAH—In a bid to turn around a disappointing 1997, Utah Medical Products Inc., has purchased several neonatal tubing, catheter and disposable blood filtration lines from C.R. Bard Inc.
Midvale-based Utah Medical said July 30 it purchased the assets of Gesco International Inc. and Bard Access Systems Inc. Terms were not disclosed.
UM officials could not be reached, but a spokesman for Bard of Murray Hill, N.J., said the sale does not include any plants. UM said the immediate financial benefits ``will come from more effective use of its existing manufacturing overhead resources.''
The purchase is UM's first since its former chairman, Perry Lane, resigned March 30 and blasted UM for failed product lines and sales that fell from $38.6 million in 1996 to $24.2 million in 1997. UM said Lane's letter amounted to sour grapes.
UM said its sales and profit for the first half of 1998 rose 28 percent and 18 percent, respectively, compared with 1997. The company attributed much of that to its mid-1997 acquisition of Columbia Medical Inc. in Redmond, Ore.
UM said the products it purchased treat critically ill babies, and include a urinary drainage system, lumbar puncture supplies and a disposable peritoneal dialysis system.
A Bard spokesman said the neonatal equipment was a small product line in a business area that Bard is deemphasizing. He declined to say what sales the company had from them.
Utah Medical also said the deal includes an unspecified ``continuing incentive'' for Bard to help UM be successful with the product line.
Encore enters medical with Bye purchase
SANDUSKY, OHIO — Encore Plastics Corp. expanded into medical products by acquiring Jonathan Bye Industries Inc. of Byesville, Ohio.
Jonathan Bye injection molds and assembles razors and other medical and surgical products. The company has annual sales of $1.5 million, estimated Encore Vice President Tim Rathbun. It also does custom molding. Encore injection molds and thermoforms pails and painting accessories at its Sandusky headquarters plant. Rathbun said Encore's sales are about $3.5 million a year.
Jonathan Bye offers international marketing opportunities, especially in Central and South America, and Encore plans to exploit them, Rathbun said in an interview. It was owned by Medical Service Corp. International, a global humanitarian and medical administration organization based in Arlington, Va. Encore has retained Medical Service Senior Vice President Cynthia Turner as a sales consultant to help Encore tap Jonathan Bye's international distribution channels.
Rathbun said Encore plans to expand the Byesville plant by installing a 350-ton press and two 500-ton presses there. The facility now has 10 presses. Jonathan Bye has been a subcontractor for Encore for about eight years, he said.
Turner said Medical Service decided to focus on its international activities because of the increasingly competitive market in disposables. Medical Service bought Jonathan Bye in 1981.