Leading PVC construction profiles producer Deceuninck NV is closing two underperforming businesses in Belgium.
Deceuninck of Hooglede, Belgium, said in January that it will shut down Deceuninck Recycling, its Andenne-based, non-PVC plastics recycler and producer of posts and planks used for municipal and park furniture, at the end of February.
The company previously announced a plan to close Uniplast SA, an Estaimpuis, Belgium-based extruder of Vitflex flexible polypropylene, pre-cabled conduit and Mondoflex small-diameter polyethylene water pipe. That operation employed 14.
Deceuninck bought Uniplast in 1999. The unit was hit by rising polymer prices and saw its annual sales fall from 2.39 million euros ($2.3 million) in 2000 to 2.36 million euros ($2.27 million) in 2001. Despite some sales growth in 2002, the firm's results were ``below par,'' according to the parent company.
``Since Uniplast has not achieved the set targets for the last two years, it was decided to dispose of the activities,'' said Deceuninck, which is seeking alternative employment for the Uniplast work force either within or outside the company.
Deceuninck already has sold the firm's four extrusion lines and customer database to two companies. Preflexible NV of Ninove, Belgium, bought two Vitflex machinery lines, and Grainplastics NV of Leeuwarden, the Netherlands, bought two Mondoflex pipe lines. Terms were not disclosed.
The recycling business, which Deceuninck acquired in 1989 when it was called Rheo, saw its 2001 sales drop to 690,000 euros ($660,000) from 710,000 euros ($680,000) in 2000. The company blamed the drop on a decline in investment by Belgian municipal authorities. The eight employees losing their jobs as a result of the shutdown are being redeployed, said the group.
The closure does not take the group entirely out of plastics recycling. Deceuninck still processes PVC waste from its own operations and buys recycled material from outside for some applications.