Euro United closes while buyer sought OAKVILLE, ONTARIO — Euro United Corp. has shut manufacturing operations for two weeks while a receiver tries to help it find a buyer.
The Oakville-based injection molder of proprietary consumer goods such as casual furniture and housewares plans to reopen in about two weeks, when it expects new owners to take over the company, said Frank Conley, human resources manager for Euro's production facility in Buffalo, N.Y.
Euro and interim receiver KPMG Inc. decided "it is no longer viable to keep pouring money" into operations while they search for a buyer, Conley said in a telephone interview. In Buffalo alone, Euro laid off 298 of its 325 workers Feb. 15.
"I believe everyone [in Buffalo] will be back," predicted Conley, adding that the operation there is viable.
Officials at Euro's headquarters and at KPMG could not be reached for comment.
As reported on Page 18 of this issue, KPMG Corporate Finance Inc. is looking for new investors in Euro.
SAI, Inoac launch joint venture in Japan
NANTERRE, FRANCE — Europe's SAI Automotive AG is launching its first foray into Japan, in a joint venture to help produce instrument panels for two automakers.
SAI of Frankfurt, Germany, a subsidiary of Sommer Allibert SA, will provide 10 people for research and development while Inoac Corp. of Nagoya, Japan, will manufacture the pieces, said Emmanuelle Machet, spokeswoman for Sommer Allibert of Nanterre.
SAI and Inoac have worked together for 10 years and have existing joint ventures in Germany and the United States, including a plant in Fountain Inn, S.C., that turns out instrument panels, door panels and consoles.
The companies anticipate sales of $170 million for the Japanese venture during the next four years. They already have contracts to produce panels for Nissan Motor Co.'s Primera and some Mazda Motor Co. vehicles.
SAI has 15,000 employees and 53 production sites in Europe, North America and South America. Inoac produces plastic, composite and rubber parts for a variety of industries, including automotive and construction, in 14 countries.
Porex buys Scottish PTFE manufacturer
FAIRBURN, GA. — Medical plastics injection molder Porex Corp. has purchased a small Scottish manufacturer of polytetrafluoroethylene products, Mupor Ltd.
Debbie Britt, spokeswoman for Fairburn-based Porex, said the Feb. 16 purchase gives the company its first PTFE capability, but she declined to talk about specific applications.
Terms were not disclosed. Porex does not plan any changes in management at Mupor, which is in Alness, Scotland, Britt said.
Mupor manufactures microporous PTFE membrane film, sheet and discs, and solid PTFE labware. Applications include medical venting and toxic-gas sensing. Mupor has 20 employees, but Britt declined to specify its manufacturing capabilities.
The acquisition comes as Porex is closing its plant in Newnan, Ga., and moving the manufacturing of plastic liquid-handling products from there to an unspecified West Coast plant. Company officials could not be reached, but the Atlanta Journal reported Feb. 17 that about 70 people will lose their jobs when the plant closes March 31.
Porex makes both solid and porous plastic products.
PP makers seeking March price hikes
AKRON, OHIO — Polypropylene makers are pushing for price increases in March after seeing little success in raising prices in January.
Market leader Montell Polyolefins of Wilmington, Del., will try to raise PP prices 3 cents per pound effective March 1. BP Amoco Corp. of Chicago, Aristech Chemicals Corp. of Pittsburgh and Formosa Plastics Corp. USA of Livingston, N.J., have announced similar increases.
Epsilon Products of Marcus Hook, Pa., and Huntsman Corp. of Salt Lake City have announced 5 cent increases for March 1, but industry contacts expected these moves to be reduced to match the competing increases.
"Propylene monomer prices are rising right along with petroleum prices," a Montell spokesman said. "We're reacting to the prices we're paying."
Three cent increases attempted in January failed because of plentiful supply and tight competition among producers, according to several PP buyers.