Microtek buys tube, bag maker Plasco
COLUMBUS, MISS. - Surgical drape maker Microtek Medical Inc. acquired medical plastics processor Plasco Inc. on Nov. 24.
Gurnee, Ill.-based Plasco extrudes and manufactures lay-flat tubing, blood bags and other medical collection bags. Microtek spokesman Victor Thompson said the firm wants to add Plasco's products to its much larger sales and distribution channels.
Terms were not disclosed. Plasco told Plastics News in 1999 that it had $15 million in annual sales, with 150 employees, but Microtek said Plasco now has $9 million in sales.
Plasco officials in 1999 said they faced competition from cheaper Chinese and Malaysian imports, when they announced plans to set up a new assembly plant in Mexico.
Thompson said he did not know if the company still has the Mexican plant, and he said he did not know what will happen with Plasco management or the company's existing operations. Plasco officials referred all calls to Microtek.
Plasco does contract manufacturing and sells its products under the name Medical Devices International. Microtek said Plasco's custom manufacturing capabilities and proprietary products will help Microtek expand in the angiography and urology markets.
Microtek is based in Columbus, but has all of its manufacturing in the Dominican Republic. The publicly traded firm reported $86.7 million in sales in 2002.
Pechiney lays off 90 at Iowa film plant
CHICAGO - Facing a weaker U.S. market, Pechiney Plastic Packaging Inc. has laid off 40 percent of its workforce at its food and dairy facility in Des Moines, Iowa.
The company filed a notice with the Des Moines-based Iowa Workforce Development agency stating that it had laid off 90 workers Nov. 17. The facility, which makes film for cheese, meat and other food, employed 220, according to figures filed with the state.
Company officials at Chicago-based Pechiney Plastic and at the Des Moines plant were unavailable for comment before the Thanksgiving holiday.
The company is owned by Paris-based Pechiney SA, a maker of aluminum and plastic products. The company is close to being sold to Montreal-based Alcan Inc., in a deal valued at about $4.5 billion. That sale has been recommended by Pechiney's directors, but awaits regulatory approval.
The company reported weaker earnings for its packaging division during the third quarter, with a decline of 30 percent from the previous-year period. The company ranked eighth on Plastics News' ranking of North American film and sheet extruders in 2002, with $700 million in relevant sales.
Consolidated acquires unit of Contour
ATLANTA - Consolidated Container Co. has purchased the blow molding assets of Contour Packaging Corp., gaining technology and a new customer.
Extrusion blow molding equipment used by Contour will be transferred to Consolidated plants in the South and West, said Gina Haines, business development director for the Atlanta company's consumer packaging goods unit.
Philadelphia-based Contour will exit the production of blow molded bottles and focus on its decorating and labeling business, Haines said Nov. 24. The company made custom bottles, using a variety of resins, for the consumer packaging market, including the personal-care segment, Haines said.
Consolidated will use the equipment to expand its midrange shuttle blow molding capacity and its customer base. The company has signed a three-year sourcing agreement with an unspecified customer that had used both Consolidated and Contour in the past, Haines said.
Consolidated recorded $832 million in North American blow molding sales last year, ranking third on Plastics News' listing. Contour recorded $5 million in sales last year and has 12 blow molding machines, according to the ranking.
Terms of the deal were not announced.
Saudi firm licenses Spheripol know-how
HOOFDDORP, NETHERLANDS - Basell NV has licensed its Spheripol-brand polypropylene process technology to Al-Zamil Group of Saudi Arabia for use at a plant with annual PP capacity of almost 1 billion pounds.
Hoofddorp-based Basell also is seeking licensees for its Spherizone-brand PP process technology for the first time.
In Saudi Arabia, the $550 million commercial production project is to begin in 2007. Al-Zamil is based in Riyadh, but the location of the complex has not been finalized.
Spherizone is a multizone circulating reactor technology. Basell has operated a commercial-scale Spherizone PP plant in Brindisi, Italy, since 2002, when it retrofitted an existing Spheripol plant there.