AT selling wire, cable compounds business
BRAMPTON, ONTARIO — AT Plastics Inc. is getting out of the wire and cable compounds business.
The Brampton firm agreed to sell its PowerGuard medium-voltage power cable materials and Aqua-Link low-voltage materials businesses to Equistar Chemicals LP. The companies did not disclose terms of the deal, which includes AT's compounding plant in Peachtree City, Ga. They expect to finalize the deal by May 31.
The businesses are part of AT's Performance Compounds business segment. The rest of the segment, AT's Flexet residential water pipe compounds business, will be switched to AT's Specialty Polymers unit.
Gary Connaughty, AT president and chief executive officer, said the firm will focus on packaging, films and specialty ethylene copolymer resins.
Equistar of Houston plans to keep the Peachtree City operation going. Eugene Allspach, Equistar president and chief operating officer, said the acquired businesses will complement Equistar's existing wire- and cable-related product lines.
Macfarlane buying National Packaging
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND — Macfarlane Group plc is buying one of the United Kingdom's largest distributors of packaging materials.
Glasgow-based Macfarlane is paying 21.7 million ($31 million) for National Packaging Group plc of Coventry, England.
National, formerly the packaging distribution wing of Charles Baynes plc, employs 275 in Coventry and at 17 branch outlets. The unit reported 2000 profit of 2.8 million ($4 million) on sales of 48 million ($69 million).
According to Macfarlane, the deal consolidates its position as the largest distributor of packaging materials in the fragmented U.K. market.
Plassein changes name to reflect scope
WILLINGTON, CONN. — Plassein Packaging Corp. has changed its name to Plassein International. The name better reflects the company's broad line of film products, said President and Chief Executive Officer Frank McNabb.
Plassein was formed with the acquisition of six specialty film companies a year ago.
The company also has unveiled a group of new products that display its "versatility in niche markets," McNabb said. Those include a barrier film for construction, films for automotive and food-packaging applications, a new round bread bag and a fast-food bag that a major chain will commercialize this month, he said.
Willington-based Plassein has more than 700 employees at eight manufacturing locations and annual sales of $180 million, according to a news release.
Parkway is latest Thixomat's licensee
ERLANGER, KY. — The metal molding technology of Thixomat Inc. has picked up another licensee — a new joint venture between plastics and rubber processor Parkway Products Inc. and BMI, which makes shielding products to protect electronic equipment.
The venture, BMI-Parkway LLC, will be housed at a Parkway factory in Erlanger. Production is to begin in June.
Thixomat, based in Ann Arbor, Mich., said that BMI-Parkway is the seventh North American company to have licensed its technology, called Thixomolding.
The process allows for the injection molding of magnesium alloys.
BMI-Parkway will manufacture thin-walled structural components, parts that integrate metal, plastic and rubber, and enclosures that shield electronic products from electromagnetic interference.
The operation will serve the telecommunications, automotive electronics, computer and aerospace industries.
BMI-Parkway said Thixomolding makes parts that are five to 20 times stronger, and more rigid, than most plastics of comparable density.
The electrical and thermal conductivity of magnesium also means the parts are well-suited for EMI shielding.
Parkway, based in Florence, Ky., does plastics injection molding, metal stamping, polyurethane molding, compression molding and other types of composites processing.
BMI is based in Palatine, Ill.