GE Plastics eyes Chinese sheet maker
PITTSFIELD, Mass.-GE Plastics plans to purchase a polycarbonate sheet extrusion company in China, continuing its expansion into the Asian sheet market.
The firm will buy Zhongshan Plastech Sunsheet Co. Ltd. of Zhongshan, China, a maker of multiwall sheet near Hong Kong. The deal, signed April 10 and set to close by mid-May, gives GE Plastics its first toehold in China's emerging PC sheet industry.
That market is expected to grow 15 percent annually in such areas as building and construction, agriculture and advertising, said Mark Wall, president of GE Plastics Greater China, in a news release.
Currently, GE Plastics has about 550 people in China at two compounding facilities and several development, service and sales offices. The acquisition in China will add 76 people, said GE Plastics spokesman Jay Pomeroy. Sales figures for the company and acquisition terms were not available.
The company plans to use the sheet extrusion capabilities of the company, to be renamed GE Plastics Sunsheet (Zhongshan) Co. Ltd., to serve China's southeast coastline.
``China is a very high priority for GE Plastics,'' Pomeroy said. ``We expect our business to grow there, and we expect it to be a very key market for the next several years. It's all about where our customers are.''
Pittsfield-based GE Plastics also reached an agreement March 20 to buy the twin-wall sheet extrusion business of Corboron Sdn. Bhd. In Klang, Malaysia. That deal is to close in the second quarter.
Quadrant buying Swiss conduit division
ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - Quadrant AG is expanding its European plastic pipe activities with the acquisition of some assets of Wavin Swisspipe AG of Subingen, Switzerland. Terms were not disclosed.
The deal, set to close by April 21, includes orders and inventory related to electrical cable conduit at Swisspipe operations in Eysings, Switzerland. Quadrant subsidiary Symalit AG of Lenzburg, Switzerland, will take over the business.
Wavin BV, the Zwolle, Netherlands, parent company to Wavin Swisspipe, has decided to focus on pressurized piping and construction services. Wavin also is keeping Swisspipe's Internet-related conduit business.
The Eysings operation has 12 extrusion lines and generated 2001 sales of 6 million Swiss francs ($3.6 million). The plant will close and the equipment will be sold to third parties, according to Harold Koeneman, managing director of Wavin's Swiss operations.
Zurich-based Quadrant recently reported that its 2001 profit rose 53 percent to 26.3 million Swiss francs ($15.9 million), and sales nearly doubled to 465 million francs ($281 million). Last year was the first full year since the company decided to focus on specialty plastic operations.
Meanwhile, Wavin BV recently acquired a Surnadal, Norway-based pipe extruder, International Pipe Systems AS. The acquired company has annual sales of about 22 million euros ($19 million) and employs 75 at operations in Norway and Sweden.
A plant in Kuhmoinen, Finland, is not included in the deal, IPS owns 40 percent of that operation, and the local partner may buy the operation. Also not included is equipment in Surnadal to injection mold pipe fittings.
At the end of March, Wavin announced that its 2001 profit rose 9 percent to 37 million euros ($32.5 million) and sales grew 5 percent to about 900 million euros ($792 million).
Hall of Fame accepting nominations
LEOMINSTER, MASS. - Nominations are available for the Plastics Hall of Fame, as a new group of members will be enshrined during NPE 2003.
Nominations will close Dec. 1.
The Plastics Hall of Fame is housed in Leominster at the National Plastics Center & Museum. The Plastics Academy, which administers the hall, is accepting nominations for living individuals. Separate ceremonies are held for posthumous inductees.
``We welcome nominations from any interested party,'' said John Kretzschmar, chairman of the Plastics Academy. ``And we have established new procedures to simplify the nominating process and increase our ability to identify and honor those who did the most to make our industry great.''
Anyone who wants to make a nomination should obtain the official form, which includes criteria for nomination, from the academy office in Leominster or from any academy director.
Contact the Plastics Academy, 210 Lancaster St., Leominster, Mass. 01453. Tel. (978) 537-9529 or fax (978) 537-3220.
Now with 120 members, the Plastics Hall of Fame was created in 1972 to honor people whose extraordinary accomplishments contributed to the industry's growth. A committee of plastics trade magazine editors and trade association representatives screen all nominations. Then, a committee of all living Plastics Hall of Fame members selects up to nine new members.