Rotational molder Ameri-Kart Corp., which makes municipal refuse containers and tanks for recreational vehicles, has purchased an Ohio rotomolder to expand into custom molding.
Ameri-Kart announced Aug. 4 that it bought privately held Sherwood Plastics Inc. of Fostoria, Ohio. Terms were not disclosed.
``This was a strategic purchase for us. We wanted to expand and diversify,'' said Eric Gottuso, Ameri-Kart president.
Gottuso said business has slowed in the municipal trash cart business.
``It's extremely competitive,'' he said in a telephone interview. ``It used to be rotomolding was by far the dominant process. Now there are several injection molders in it, and there's even some blow molders coming in.''
Consolidation among trash haulers also has made the business more difficult, he said.
Ameri-Kart, with estimated 1997 rotomolding sales of $21 million, is No. 14 on Plastics News' ranking. About 160 people work at the two plants, in Bristol, Ind., and Goddard, Kan. The Kansas plant molds refuse containers. Ameri-Kart makes RV tanks and does custom molding at its Bristol headquarters.
Sherwood Plastics employs 71 at its single plant. Sherwood had 1997 sales of $6 million from a range of products such as fuel tanks for the boat industry and custom parts for the automotive and medical industries.
Gottuso said Ameri-Kart will retain Sherwood's Ohio factory with the same employees.
Publicly traded Myers Industries Inc. of Akron, Ohio, acquired Ameri-Kart in 1995. Myers reported $339.6 million in 1997 sales, from plastic products such as storage containers, shipping containers and toolboxes, rubber goods and tire repair products.
Together, Ameri-Kart and Sherwood will run 21 rotomolding machines at the three factories, according to Plastics News data.