Polypipe plc acquires roof systems producer
DONCASTER, ENGLAND — Acquisitive plastic pipe and building component producer Polypipe plc has announced its second takeover this year.
The British company is moving into the garden greenhouse business with its acquisition of conservatory roof system manufacturer Rickmans Ltd. of Rainham, England, for £750,000 ($1.2 million) in cash.
On Jan. 4, Doncaster-based Polypipe paid £9 million ($15 million) to take over thermoset toilet seat molder Pagette Sanitar Produktions-Vertriebs GmbH of Bottrop, Germany.
Polypipe already extrudes PVC profiles for the window, door and greenhouse fabrication markets through its subsidiary Premier Profiles Ltd. of Doncaster.
``Rickmans is an excellent acquisition for us as it will fit in well with our window profile extrusion business. It provides an opportunity to access the developing conservatory roof market,'' said Polypipe Executive Chairman Kevin McDonald.
He sees considerable opportunities for Polypipe to expand the business through Premier Profiles' network of window fabricators.
Rickmans recorded sales for the year ended March 31 of £266,000 pounds ($433,000), with an operating profit of £30,000 pounds ($49,000), according to Polypipe.
Precise Plastic buys injection molder B&E
CORONA, CALIF. — Precise Plastic Products Inc. acquired B&E Molding Inc. in an early February combination of Southern California injection molders.
Precise obtained access to B&E's customers and added former B&E owner Bill Doornbos as a technical sales representative. Doornbos' patented line of molded Bird Mode bird feeders was part of the deal. No other terms were disclosed.
B&E had 1998 sales of about $350,000, Precise President Ron Harwood said in a Feb. 8 office interview in Corona.
Precise intends to sell assets at B&E's 4,500-square-foot leased site in Huntington Beach, including two 300-ton Imco injection molding presses and one 50-ton Arburg.
Precise has capacity to do the B&E work on existing equipment at its new $2 million, 38,000-square-foot Corona facility. Precise moved in August from Garden Grove, retaining most key employees through the transition, Harwood said.
The business was founded in 1965 and now operates 16 injection molding machines of 40-610 tons, one compression press and one transfer press. Precise employs 45, including two mold maintenance workers and three people in a machine shop. The firm also has 10-15 temporary workers.
Harwood expects the firm to complete ISO 9002 registration in the next six to eight months and said it will pursue more medical work. He obtained a one-third ownership of Precise in 1993 and acquired the remainder in 1996.
The aerospace market accounted for about 65 percent of Precise sales of $4.3 million for the fiscal year ended in February 1998. The molder had fiscal 1993 sales of about $700,000, all from aerospace.
Swiss company nabs pipe extruder Terrain
AYLESFORD, ENGLAND — British hopefuls interested in acquiring Terrain Ltd., the PVC drainage pipe extruder and fitment molding subsidiary of Caradon plc, have been upstaged by a Swiss company.
Geberit Group, a Jona, Switzerland-based maker of drainage and water supply systems, is paying £27 million ($44 million) cash for Aylesford-based Terrain.
Several British companies had expressed interest in the unit. Terrain, which employs 267, runs nine extrusion lines at its Aylesford plant. It also has a one-third interest in a small joint venture pipe plant in Dubai.
Terrain, which recorded a £1.2 million ($2 million) profit on sales of £25.5 million ($42 million) in 1998, claims to hold a leading share in the British drainage pipe and fitment market.
Weighbridge, England-based Caradon sold the company as part of its strategy of focusing on fewer, larger businesses.
Other businesses on the block include its door and window businesses in Britain and North America.
Australia modifies plastic bank notes
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA — The Reserve Bank of Australia, which developed the world's first plastic bank notes, has had to modify its notes after counterfeits were detected.
The counterfeits were ``not of great quality,'' but Australian Federal Police worked with the Reserve Bank to improve security on the notes, making them much harder to duplicate, said AFP spokesman Tracey Dickinson.
When polymer notes were introduced in 1992, Note Printing Australia, a division of the Reserve Bank, claimed the notes were virtually impossible to counterfeit.
The polypropylene notes are produced by the RBA's manufacturing subsidiary, Note Printing Australia of Melbourne, which sources film from Brussels, Belgium-based flexible plastics company UCB SA.
Dickinson would not give details of the counterfeits for security reasons. A Reserve Bank spokeswoman said the new notes include an image visible only when the notes are folded.
The new measure joins other polymer note security features, such as the ability to see the Australian Coat of Arms when the note is held under a light, printing that is slightly raised and serial numbers that are fluorescent under ultraviolet light.
U-Nova expanding its duct, hose line
RICHMOND HILL, ONTARIO — U-Nova Plastics, after only a year in production, is expanding its line of duct and hose to include heavy-duty material-handling versions.
One of the Flexmaster group of companies, U-Nova's products primarily are made of thermoplastic urethanes and PVC.
Since its founding in 1998, the company has sold more than 500,000 feet of its products and expects its new line to double that figure this year.
The new materials-handling hoses will fill holes in U-Nova's product lines, which had focused mainly on transfer of low-abrasion materials such as air, sawdust, metal fillings and various liquids, said Melinda Donnelly, marketing manager for Richmond Hill-based Flexmaster.
The heavy-duty ducting allows for transfer of more-destructive substances such as gravel, grain and woodchips, said Anwar Ahmad, plastics plant manager.
U-Nova is confident its heavy-duty products will sell well because its compounds maintain a higher degree of flexibility than competitive products without sacrificing abrasion resistance, Donnelly said.
The firm is extruding about half its heavy-duty products from TPUs at its 20,000-square-foot plant in Richmond Hill, Ahmad said. The new hoses are reinforced with copper or steel wiring and are available in diameters of 11/2-16 inches, he said.
U-Nova did not add equipment, space or employees to begin construction of its new line, but plans to expand its work force in the future, Ahmad said.