Packaging group leaves SPI for APC
ARLINGTON, VA. - The Rigid Plastic Packaging Institute plans to leave the Society of the Plastics Industry Inc. and affiliate with the American Plastics Council, saying it needs APC's extensive state government lobbying and communication capabilities.
The group is concerned about recycled-content initiatives in California and wants APC's help to boost membership, said John Hausoul, RPPI executive director. RPPI will benefit by being more closely involved with APC's nondurable-goods unit and hopes to explore developing benchmarking data, he said.
Hausoul will leave Washington-based SPI as part of the switch. He will work out of his house in Elmhurst, Ill., near Chicago. APC is based in Arlington.
Both RPPI and SPI officials said they will continue to work together. Hausoul said he does not know if RPPI member companies will remain in SPI.
Film, sheet maker HPG files Chapter 11
SOMERSET, N.J. - Film and sheet maker HPG International Inc. of Somerset has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, but the firm said operations at its extrusion and calendering plant in Mountaintop, Pa., will not be affected.
HPG filed Dec. 18 for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code in Trenton, N.J. HPG's parent company - VIG Holdings Ltd. - and HPG subsidiaries Penn Kalex Polymers Inc., Crestwood Inc. and Projects Management Inc. were included in the filing.
The firm is continuing to meet employee payroll and benefits and expects to meet post-petition obligations, officials said in a Dec. 21 news release. HPG produces polyolefin-based film and sheet and calenders PVC-based film at the Mountaintop site, which houses nine lines and employs 260. The calendering business operates as Penn Kalex.
The Times Leader newspaper in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., reported the company temporarily closed operations at its site in Wright Township, Pa., for most of December and furloughed 175 workers. That plant makes pool liners and vinyl roofing products.
HPG posted film and sheet sales of $81 million in 2000, placing No. 60 among North American film and sheet makers in a recent Plastics News industry ranking.
Cookson sells last U.S. units, U.K. plant
LONDON - Cookson Group plc finally has pulled out of general plastics processing with its announced sale of two remaining U.S. custom molding operations and a plastic pallet plant in the United Kingdom.
In a recent sweeping-up operation, London-based Cookson sold four separate businesses, three of which are in the United States, for $54 million.
In November, Orbis Inc. of Oconomowoc, Wis., revealed it had purchased Cookson Plastic Molding Corp., a Lawrenceville, Ga., structural foam molder of high density polyethylene pallets.
Cookson announced the remaining deals Jan. 2, but withheld the identity of the buyers.
The deals included the EPC/Loudon custom injection molding plant in Mora, Minn.; Chelmsford, England-based structural foam pallet molder Cookson Plastics Europe Ltd.; and Cookson Plastic Molding Corp., a Latham, N.Y., custom injection molder.
Cookson wants to concentrate on its core industrial materials operations in electronics, precious metals and ceramics. It still is involved in plastics with its precision products operation, and it makes molding compounds and laminates.
Clarion will fight delisting by Nasdaq
GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - In the midst of an aggressive cost-cutting program, injection molder Clarion Technologies Inc. plans to fight a determination by Nasdaq to delist the company.
Clarion has 45 days to appeal the ruling, said James Hostetler, Clarion vice president of investor relations. Clarion's stock was trading at 32 cents a share Jan. 3 and had been below $1 a share since early September.
The company moved its headquarters from Holland, Mich., to Grand Rapids, Mich., and cut costs in 2001. In July, it closed one of two injection molding plants in Greenville, Mich., and transferred employees to other facilities. Clarion also has revamped other operations and is outsourcing tool manufacturing.
Clarion recorded sales of $83.4 million for the first three quarters of 2001, down about $2 million from the same period in 2000. The automotive supplier lost $24.6 million for the first nine months of last year.