Court OKs acquisition of Trend assets
WILMINGTON, DEL. - A U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington approved the sale of most of Trend Technologies Inc.'s assets to a group headed by Earl Payton on Jan. 3.
The group agreed to pay $61 million in cash, assume $8 million in debt and, upon closing probably in mid-January, operate the Chino, Calif.-based business as a limited liability company, Trend Technologies LLC. The sale includes stock in Trend's operations in Ireland, Mexico, Malaysia and Singapore.
Trend and Payton's group negotiated terms before and after the firm's Nov. 7 filing for protection from creditors under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. The filing occurred to facilitate the sale. Brad Godshall, a Los Angeles lawyer representing the company, said the current Trend management team will remain in place, including Payton as chief operating officer.
London investment firm Doughty Hanson & Co. Ltd. will not benefit from the sale, but the firm's cooperation helped to save 2,000 jobs, Godshall said. Doughty Hanson invested $215 million to acquire about 90 percent of Trend in March 2000. Those assets ``are not worth anything'' now, Godshall added.
O-I relocating Pa. plant's production
TOLEDO, OHIO - Packaging producer Owens-Illinois Inc. is shifting some closure operations to a different plant, a strategy that it expects to yield growth, but that also will cause some short-term job losses.
Starting in March, the Toledo-based company will move part of its injection molded specialty closure business from a plant in Erie, Pa., to an unspecified facility in the Southwest, spokeswoman Sara Theis said Jan. 9. Those products include such items as trigger sprayers and lotion pumps.
The move will mean the loss of 60-80 jobs at the Erie plant, which now employs 242.
The business in Erie will be replaced by an expansion in O-I's standard closure systems, another product molded at the Pennsylvania plant, Theis said. The company hopes the loss of workers is temporary until more work and new equipment is transferred into the facility, she said.
O-I's strategy is to serve a growing customer base for its standard closures, used on a variety of food and beverage, personal-care and health-care containers, she said.
Asia-focused plastics magazine to fold
CROYDON, ENGLAND - British publishing company Emap Maclaren has killed its Asian Plastics News magazine, blaming a loss of U.S. advertisers.
Emap Maclaren Managing Director Jim Hay wrote a letter to readers announcing that the December 2002 issue was the last for the 10-issue-per-year publication. The company confirmed it will drop the publication's three staffers in Singapore.
``The decision is a direct result of the turmoil in the U.S. market as a result of Sept. 11, 2001. As a result of this, our U.S. advertising revenues have pretty well ceased,'' Hay wrote. ``Over 60 percent of the [total] advertising base of Asian Plastics News was derived from the U.S., so the continued removal of this revenue has left the magazine in an unsustainable position.''
Emap Maclaren, a unit of Emap plc, publishes two plastics industry titles in Europe: the British newspaper Plastics & Rubber Weekly, and the monthly magazine European Plastics News. The company is not related to Plastics News.
Asian Plastics News, with a circulation of about 12,000 per month throughout Asia, was launched in 1988. Emap bought APN and EPN four years later.
Andrew Beevers, editorial and conference director for Croydon-based Emap Maclaren, said the unit has been approached by several potential buyers for the Asian Plastics News title.
Canadian plastics pioneer inductee dies
COBOURG, ONTARIO - Canadian plastics veteran Clay Elliott died Dec. 27 at age 77 after a brief illness.
He founded structural foam molder Horizon Plastics Co. Ltd. in 1972 and was a pioneer in the development of structural foam technology.
Elliott, whose full name was Charles Clayson Elliott, was active in industry associations and last year was inducted into the Pioneers Club of the Society of the Plastics Industry Inc.'s Structural Plastics Division. He retired two years ago after 50 years in plastics, handing Horizon's reins to son-in-law Brian Read, president of the Cobourg-based firm. Elliott's awards included the Paul Harris Fellowship from Rotary International.