Carlyle mum on reported role in TRW bid
CLEVELAND - Officials for TRW Inc. and Carlyle Group say they will not comment on published reports that Carlyle will join with financial company Blackstone Group in a bid to buy TRW's automotive unit.
News reports Aug. 23 said the two companies are offering to acquire the entire automotive unit, which TRW plans to sell or spin off as part of a pending deal to sell itself to Northrop Grumman Corp.
Northrop Grumman of Los Angeles and Cleveland-based TRW announced in July that they had a definitive agreement for an all-stock purchase worth $7.8 billion, which could wrap up by the end of 2002. Defense contractor Northrop, however, does not want the auto divisions, which include plastics processing for air-bag systems, steering wheels and heating and air-conditioning units.
TRW has filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission to spin off the auto unit, with more than $10 billion in annual sales, to its stockholders. But TRW has not committed to a specific plan to divest the holding.
Washington-based Carlyle has a stake in Key Plastics LLC through its turnaround group Carlyle Management Group. New York-based Blackstone has had a controlling interest in Collins & Aikman Corp.
Goderich to expand, diversify disposables
GODERICH, ONTARIO - Newly formed Goderich Plastics Inc. wants to expand its consumer disposables business and diversify eventually into medical disposables.
The company in Goderich was formed from the assets of the former Renwel Inc., a private company that went into receivership in March. It runs nine Engel and Husky injection presses with clamping forces of 150-600 tons, said Mike Lang, vice president of sales and marketing.
The company has been in production for existing customers since Renwel was put on the market last spring, Lang said in a telephone interview. It operates in a new, 86,400-square-foot building about an hour from the U.S./Canada border and near Port Huron, Mich., making it well-situated to ship to the Midwest, he said.
The former Renwell facility was built last year when the town of Goderich expanded its industrial park to attract new business. Cash-flow problems spurred its main lender to force Renwel into receivership. Lang would not identify the new owner of the assets or the price paid.
Rubbermaid worker crushed by machine
MOGADORE, OHIO - A worker was killed Aug. 18 at a Rubbermaid Home Products facility in Mogadore.
William E. Kachelries, 34, was crushed while operating an injection molding machine, said Mogadore Police Chief David Quillen.
The Wooster, Ohio-based firm shut down operations at the plant the evening of the incident and reopened Aug. 19 with grief counselors on hand, said spokeswoman Keri Butler. Company officials are cooperating with county officials and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, she said. Employees were not required to return to work when the facility reopened.
``This is a huge tragedy for the company as well as his family,'' Butler said in an Aug. 19 telephone interview, adding that the facility's workers are extremely close-knit. ``Our paramount concern is making sure employees' needs are met. That's our focus right now, in conjunction with conducting our own investigation right along with the public officials.''
Kachelries was a four-year veteran of Rubbermaid, which is owned by Freeport, Ill.-based Newell Rubbermaid Co.
EPG puts its EPL unit into administration
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Difficulty raising new funds has forced biodegradable polymers pioneer Environmental Polymers Group plc to put its main operating subsidiary, European Polymers Ltd., into administration, similar to bankruptcy in the United States.
Following cost cutting earlier this year, directors announced Aug. 9 they had no option but to call in administrators to EPL. Trading of shares in the Manchester-based company were suspended temporarily on London's Alternative Investment Market.
The subsidiary, which has been negotiating international partnerships and developing markets for its water-soluble polyvinyl alcohol-based polymer, is in the hands of administrator PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Pricewaterhouse aims to sell the business as a going concern and has received about 40 inquiries from interested parties, according to administration manager David Hurst.
In March, EPG reported an operating loss of £1.48 million ($2.26 million) on sales of £5,000 ($7,600) for the six months ended Dec. 31.