Smithers buys Akron Polymer assets
AKRON, OHIO - Tritech Laboratories LLC has sold the commercial testing activities of its Akron Polymer Laboratories unit to another Akron-based firm, Smithers Scientific Services Inc., for an undisclosed sum.
For Smithers, which also is buying some of APL's testing equipment and instrumentation, the deal means an expansion in the plastics and urethane testing markets.
David Russell, former general manager of APL and a urethanes expert, is joining Smithers as polymer services director.
The APL unit will discontinue operations, according to John Semonin, vice president of technical and operations for Harwick Standard Distribution Corp. and former head of APL. Tritech and Harwick are subsidiaries of Akron-based holding company Cadreco Inc.
Semonin, who also is a vice president of Cadreco, said Tritech's future has not been determined.
``With the industry in the state it's in, we felt it was necessary to concentrate more on our core business, which is distribution,'' he said.
Hudson purchases concentrates maker
LEOMINSTER, MASS. - Hudson Color Concentrates of Leominster has expanded its geographic reach by acquiring Midwest Color, a color concentrates maker in Niles, Ill.
Hudson now adds a Midwest manufacturing site in Niles and a distribution center in Garza Garcia, Mexico, to its own production sites in Leominster and Hudson, N.H.
``We needed to ... get closer to a lot of accounts,'' said David Boudreau, Hudson sales and marketing vice president.
No purchase price was disclosed. Midwest was owned by Jordan Group, a Chicago investment firm that owns several injection molding companies in the United States and China. Midwest was Jordan's only raw materials holding and no longer fit its business plan, according to Boudreau.
Midwest employs about 30 at its two sites. The firm posted sales of about $4 million last year.
Boudreau said Hudson now plans to make its own line of concentrates at the Niles site, which operates six extrusion lines. That move particularly would be an advantage in the wire and cable market, since Hudson would have production closer to a number of customers, he said.
Hudson has about 30 workers at its two sites. The firm posted sales of about $9 million last year, running 11 extrusion lines in Leominster and a single line in Hudson. Three new extrusion lines were installed in Leominster earlier this year.
Hudson makes color concentrates based on nylon, polycarbonate and other commodity and engineering resins for wire and cable, film and housewares markets. The firm was launched in 1994 by industry veteran Lloyd Watt, who remains its sole owner.
Accel opening third site, in Tennessee
AVON, OHIO - Accel Color will open its third color concentrates production site this month, in Knoxville, Tenn.
``We have an important and growing market presence in the southeastern United States, and a local facility will allow us to better serve the region,'' Dwight Morgan, chief executive officer, said in a news release.
The 23,000-square-foot site will start with three extrusion lines. A fourth line will be added in the next six months. The plant will have 12-15 employees by the end of the year, officials said. Industry veteran Kyle Holder will serve as general manager of the new site. Initially, the plant will focus on packaging and other consumer-driven markets, Morgan said.
Avon-based Accel offers color and additive concentrates, dry color blends and toll and custom compounding, The firm employs 80 in Naperville, Ill., and Avon. Sales in 2003 are expected to be about $16 million.
Fire hits USPL again, firefighter injured
OCALA, FLA. - A firefighter was injured in a Sept. 10 flash fire at U.S. Plastic Lumber Corp.'s Ocala production facility, which was the scene of a fatal explosion last month.
Acting Capt. Garry Kirby of the Ocala Fire Rescue was treated and released Sept. 10 from Munroe Regional Medical Center in Ocala. He suffered first- and second-degree burns to his face when the fire occurred in a wood product silo.
The facility has been closed since Aug. 18, when an explosion killed one USPL worker and injured another.
``The whole area had been quarantined off,'' President Mark Alsentzer said of the cleanup operations. ``We had started to disassemble it. There must have been some smoldering from the first fire. It wasn't anything like the first fire. As a precaution, we called the fire department.''
Alsentzer said the firm was inspecting the silos for damage and hoped to return to limited production ``in a week or so.''