Reliance acquires Doskocil businesses
WINNIPEG, MANITOBA — Reliance Products LP has boosted its sporting goods product line by acquiring the tackle box, electric-cord storage and lawn and garden edging businesses of Doskocil Manufacturing Co. Ltd. of Arlington, Texas.
Winnipeg-based Reliance blow molds and injection molds proprietary water containers and other camping supplies. Tackle boxes expand its position in sporting goods while the other two businesses launch it into hardware and lawn and garden markets, Gordon Wright, Reliance's consumer products division director, said in a news release. Reliance also does custom molding and barrier-container blow molding.
Doskocil will focus on its growing pet and sporting cases markets, said President Gary Kleinjan. Its cases are used for guns, bows, golf equipment and cameras.
Doskocil is a major producer of pet carriers, doghouses, feeding and watering systems, cat products and pet beds. It boosted its stake in plastic doghouses in 1997 when it merged with Dogloo Inc. of Indianapolis, a move that boosted total annual sales to about $160 million. The company does structural foam and injection molding at a recently expanded facility in Arlington.
TIE announces phthalate migration test
BRUSSELS, BELGIUM—European toy makers now have a test method to measure the migration of phthalate plasticizers from soft PVC toys, according to Toy Industries of Europe.
The test will allow toy makers to meet European Union migration standards that were set at the end of last year, according to the Brussels-based toy trade group.
The test was developed under the auspices of the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports. EU's migration limits were set for PVC toys and child-care products designed to be put in the mouths of infants under 3 years old. At the time the limits were set by EU's Scientific Committee for Toxicity, Ecotoxicity and the Environment, the committee itself had complained that it did not have an accepted method to test phthalate migration.
TIE, which always has maintained that soft PVC toys are safe, welcomed the Dutch test.
``Now, we have a validated test method to help us demonstrate that the toy industry can meet the required migration limits and concerns of the SCTEE that there was no such method,'' said TIE Chairman Alan Munn.
Meanwhile, European toy makers are lobbying against proposed restrictions on soft PVC toys.
The governments of Sweden, Denmark and Austria are contemplating restrictions on soft PVC toys. TIE officials also are scheduled to meet Italian authorities June 10 to discuss TIE's position.
Growing Plastocon adding five presses
OCONOMOWOC, WIS. — Custom injection molder Plastocon Inc. of Oconomowoc is adding five presses and beginning to stretch the capacity of the expandable, 70,000-square-foot facility on its 5-acre site.
``We are filled to the brim,'' Jim Nurmi, vice president of sales, said in a telephone interview.
Packaging and retail product orders drive the growth; other markets include furniture and water quality.
Plastocon expects its new, 110-ton, all-electric Milacron Roboshot injection molding machine to be operational by the end of June. As Plastocon's first electric press, the machine boosts capability for close-tolerance molding.
Separately, Plastocon acquired four 1996-model FCS presses, two each with clamping forces of 200 and 350 tons. Installation was taking place in May and June.
The additions bring the ISO 9002-registered molder to a total of 30 presses of 75-500 tons. The company also operates a Solid Edge three-dimensional, computer-aided-design system.
Recently, Plastocon leased about 20,000 square feet for an offsite warehouse for finished goods, Nurmi said.
Formed in 1966, Plastocon employs 110. It reported 1998 sales of $9 million.
BPI expands in U.K. with NRT purchase
GREENOCK, SCOTLAND — Leading European polyethylene film producer British Polythene Industries plc has expanded its United Kingdom trading operations with the acquisition of Nottingham Rope and Twine Co. Ltd.
Greenock-based BPI paid £735,000 ($1.2 million) to purchase NRT, a distributor of polyethylene and other packaging products to industrial customers. The Nottingham, England, firm had annual sales of £2.1 million ($3.3 million) with operating profit of almost £103,000 ($166,000).
``With a large customer base of 1,500 and good coverage of the [British] Midlands, NRT will complement our existing trading operations'' based at Newcastle upon Tyne and Birmingham, England; and Glasgow, Scotland, and its sales force in southeast England, said Cameron McLatchie, BPI's chairman and chief executive officer.