Prairie looks at N.C. thermoforming site
BEDFORD PARK, ILL. - Thermoformer and extruder Prairie Packaging Inc. is considering sites in the Charlotte, N.C., area to build a 200,000-square-foot plant, according to an economic development official in a nearby county.
The company, based in Bedford Park, has targeted a business park in Harrisburg, N.C., as a potential plant site and is considering investing $48 million in the location over several years, said Ryan McDaniels, acting president of Cabarrus Economic Development in Concord, N.C.
Harrisburg and Cabarrus County officials have teamed up to offer Prairie more than $2 million in tax incentives for the project, first discussed more than a year ago, McDaniels said. The loan package was approved June 10.
``Everything is approved and in place, pending [Prairie Packaging's] decision,'' McDaniels said. ``The company is still debating which site in the region they want to use to build their facility.''
The company plans to hire about 250 people in several phases once a location is chosen, McDaniels said. The plant would start with about 84 employees, according to a county commission report.
The facility would be the third for Prairie, a supplier of disposable cutlery, plates and cups. Ben Shapiro, Prairie Packaging vice president of strategy, did not return a telephone call seeking comment last week.
The company, founded in 1987 by Earl Shapiro, makes plastic and foam dinnerware. Prairie ranked 25th on Plastics News' list of top North American thermoformers, with related 2003 sales estimated at $50 million.
Investor buys Lamson & Sessions plant
BEACHWOOD, OHIO - Beachwood-based pipe maker Lamson & Sessions Co. has sold its Pasadena, Texas, facility to industry investor James Pastore.
``I thought it was an attractive deal to buy,'' Pastore said in a June 16 telephone interview. ``I'm not sure what my plans are for the facility, but I have several options.''
Lamson still is extruding pipe at that location, and it will lease the space from Pastore through the end of the year, according to James Abel, Lamson's chief financial officer. The company will relocate six extrusion lines during the fourth quarter to other plants, in Oklahoma City and Clinton, Iowa. Lamson announced in February that the facility would close.
Pastore's holdings include JP Industrial Products of Lisbon, Ohio, which recycles PVC products. Pastore also operates extruder VinylSource Inc. in Girard, Ohio.
Bankrupt Ehlert Tool set for liquidation
NEW BERLIN, WIS. - A court-appointed receiver is preparing to liquidate the holdings of Wisconsin mold maker Ehlert Tool Co. Inc.
Six months ago, executives from the New Berlin firm spoke of building a 180,000-square-foot mold-building operation in China, but that plan never happened and the company filed June 9 for the state equivalent of bankruptcy.
Executives were not available to comment. The company referred callers to the receiver.
Ehlert Tool produced aluminum molds for composite compression molding, as well as hydroform tooling and stamping dies for metal processing. It also performed mold design and repair, modeling and flow analysis.
The company had 70 employees in 2003.
Depco shuts Michigan auto parts plant
PORT HURON, MICH. - Depco International Inc. is closing its Doveport Dualex Division auto parts plant in Port Huron, cutting 83 jobs.
Toronto-based Depco filed a layoff notice in early June, according to Doug Alexander, executive director of the Economic Development Alliance of St. Clair County. A June 8 story in the Port Huron Times Herald reported that the plant will close by fall.
``They are looking to consolidate with their main facility in Toronto,'' Alexander said in a June 17 telephone interview.
Company officials declined to comment.
Depco, which was founded in 1963, makes injection molded exterior and interior trim.