Silgan closing Ohio blow molding plant
PORT CLINTON, OHIO — Silgan Plastics Corp. will close one of its container blow molding plants because more companies are making their own bottles in-house.
Silgan will phase out its Fairfield, Ohio, plant beginning in April, according to Dwight Kreuter, regional manager of human resources. The process could take about four months and will eliminate about 150 jobs, Kreuter said in a telephone interview from Silgan's plant in Port Clinton.
Kreuter said the Fairfield operation mainly extrusion blow molds high density polyethylene bottles for personal-care products. Consolidation within the personal-care industry is another factor that led Silgan to close the plant.
Kreuter said at least some of Fairfield's equipment will be moved to undetermined Silgan plants. He had no details on how much equipment is involved.
Silgan of Chesterfield, Mo., was the 11th-largest North American blow molder in Plastics News' recent survey, logging blow molding sales of $321.2 million for 1999. It listed 14 North American blow molding plants in operation last November.
BMCI initiates joint venture in China
WEST CHICAGO, ILL. — The leading North American manufacturer of bulk molding compounds has set up a joint venture to make and market the thermosetting material in China.
Bulk Molding Compounds Inc. of West Chicago announced last month that it formed BMC Asia Pacific Ltd. in Hong Kong.
The new company will include a manufacturing facility in Xishan, China, near Shanghai, as well as a distribution center in Guongzhou Province, near Hong Kong and Shenzhen.
The move allows BMCI customers with manufacturing operations in China to use the same products they would in other parts of the world, according to a company news release.
BMCI also has manufacturing operations in West Chicago, Ill.; Perrysburg, Ohio; and Mexico City, and last year formed an alliance with Lonza Compounds GmbH & Co. KG of Miehlen, Germany, that allows the companies to manufacture and sell some of each other's products.
"BMCI is now in a position to supply customers around the world," said President Larry E. Nunnery Jr.
BMCI's Asia-based partners for the new venture include Formosa Thermosets, which manufactures some of BMCI's products under a licensing agreement, and TennMax, a Hong Kong-based trading firm.
Bulk molding compound is a mixture of fiberglass and thermosetting resin — usually a form of unsaturated polyester. BMC, which can be injection molded on specially equipped machines, competes with high-temperature thermoplastics in automotive, electrical and home appliance markets. A new niche for BMC is the fuel-cell industry, in which electrically conductive BMCs compete with metal.
Retiring owner sells Plastocon Inc.
OCONOMOWOC, WIS. — Ownership of custom injection molder Plastocon Inc. has shifted. Owner and President Ed Schams sold the Oconomowoc-based firm to Jim Nurmi and Joe Chmielewski, who were vice president of sales and vice president of finance, respectively. Terms were not disclosed.
Schams, who had owned the company since 1986, is retiring, Nurmi said in a Feb. 1 telephone interview.
In addition to custom work, Plastocon makes a line of proprietary food trays and related items for prisons. That is the fastest-growing part of the business, Nurmi said.
"We look to continue to evolve into higher-technology applications," Nurmi said.
The plant has 75 employees and 29 presses. Plastocon had 1999 sales of $9 million.
PN parent ventures south of the border
DETROIT — Crain Communications Inc., parent company to Plastics News, has made its first expansion into Latin America with the acquisition of three Spanish-language business publications in Mexico.
Included are the weekly El Asesor de Mexico and the bi-weekly El Asesor de Monterrey, which cover local business communities in Mexico City and Monterrey.
The third acquisition is Internet Velocidad, a bi-monthly magazine that covers Mexico's Internet industry. The three publications formerly were owned by Editorial Urbano.