January … BASF AG offers to buy Mobil Chemical Co.'s polystyrene resin business for $300 million.
January … Krauss-Maffei AG acquires 80 percent of Netstal-Maschinen AG and formally takes control of the rival injection press maker. Executives vow that the firms will continue to compete.
January … Quantum Chemical Corp., Union Carbide Corp. and Phillips 66 Co. christen three separate plastics recycling plants. The operations have the combined capacity to recycle 104 million pounds of material annually.
February … Royal Plastics Group President Vic De Zen reveals plans to market a modular housing system based on extruded thermoplastic, interlocking panels and connectors.
March … Shell Chemical Co. announces plans to buy Good-year Tire & Rubber Co.'s PET resin business.
April … Crown Cork & Seal Co. Inc. announces it is interested in entering the plastic bottle business. In September, the company follows through, initiating a $515 million friendly takeover of Constar International Inc.
May … Wellman Inc., the largest U.S. plastics recycler, announces it is quitting the high density polyethylene recycling business, citing a depressed market. The company continues to recycle PET.
May … Mobil reveals plans to enter the plastic lumber business. Its Composite Products Division manufactures a product called Trex.
May … Husky Injection Molding Systems Ltd. reaches agreement on a C$20 million (US$16.8 million) loan from the Ontario provincial government to help pay for an injection molding technology center. Rival firm Mold-Master Ltd. sues SPI Canada for its role in arranging the financing.
June … Jose Ignacio López de Arriortua, new purchasing vice president for General Motors Corp., tells 600 supplier executives that GM will be more aggressive in efforts to lower part costs.
June … Huntsman Chemical Corp. enters the plastics film business, buying eight Goodyear plants.
September … Royal Dutch/ Shell Group and Feruzzi-Mont-edison SpA confirm they may merge their polypropylene, PE and polybutylene terephthalate businesses.
October … The new American Plastics Council, formerly the Partnership for Plastics Progress, erects a billboard in Calabassas, Calif., with the mysterious message: “Take Another Look at Plastic.” The billboard is only there one day, for filming of a television commercial. APC later announces plans to spend $18 million in six months on a campaign to restore plastics' image, including $12 million on TV ads.
November ... Massachussetts voters reject a measure to require recycling, reuse, source reduction or recycled content in packaging. Industry opponents spent $5 million on the campaign.
November ... Walter Williams, chairman and CEO of Rubbermaid Inc., resigns unexpectedly. He is replaced by Wolfgang Schmitt. Former CEO Stanley Gault returns as Rubbermaid co-chairman.