Bombardier shifting some work to Taiwan
VALCOURT, QUEBEC - Bombardier Recreational Products Inc. will transfer some of its all-terrain-vehicle production from Valcourt to Taiwan to save costs.
The market leader in snowmobiles and personal watercraft will make its Rally line of entry-level ATVs in Taiwan, spokesman Pierre Pichette said by telephone. The company's ATVs rely on structural components made of fiberglass-reinforced plastic.
Valcourt is the most sophisticated of the Bombardier Recreational plants around the world, and it will retain production of four higher-end ATV models, as well as its high-volume snowmobile and watercraft mainstays. The Valcourt plant needs to free up production space for an increase in demand for Bombardier ATVs, said Pichette. Last year, the firm's ATV sales increased 63 percent. Officials did not provide ATV unit sales or dollar volume.
Bombardier Recreational is best known for its market-leading Ski-Doo snowmobiles and Sea-Doo watercraft. The Valcourt company also makes Johnson and Evinrude outboard marine motors, sports boats, utility vehicles and a range of engines.
Bombardier Recreational's sales for the year ended Jan. 31 were C$2.5 billion (US$1.8 billion), about the same as a year earlier. Profit, however, dipped to C$12.7 million (US$9.3 million) from C$114.8 million (US$84.4 million) in the previous year. Cost-reduction programs have included cutting payroll by 350 to 7,400, selling a U.S. plant, closing a distribution center and moving the headquarters from Montreal to Valcourt, its main North American facility. Streamlining also will affect plants in North America, Brazil, Austria, Finland and China, Chief Executive Officer Jose Boisjoli said.
Fla. county approves Traymax incentives
ORLANDO, FLA. - Proprietary injection molder Traymax Inc. is considering an expansion into Lake County, Fla., west of Orlando.
The Orlando firm has been approved by the Lake County Industrial Development Authority for a $45,500 incentive to create jobs.
Traymax molds trays used in fast-food outlets, produce baskets and horticultural containers. A recent report in the Leesburg Daily Commercial stated the firm recently bought a competitor and needs space to expand.
Greg Mihalik, county director of economic development and tourism, said county commissioners will hear the Traymax application within three weeks. If approved, Traymax will qualify if it pays packers in the new facility $14.34 an hour, the minimum wage for the incentive package. Skilled and supervisory positions would pay more. Traymax would hire 16 locally and eventually transfer 24 from Orlando.
Miniature Precision moves to larger site
SOUTHFIELD, MICH. - Automotive supplier Miniature Precision Components Inc. has a new location for its sales, marketing and technical services in Southfield.
Walworth, Wis.-based MPC moved into a 16,000-square-foot office in Southfield, said Kyla Remus, marketing manager. The leased site replaces a 9,100-square-foot one in Southfield that MPC had been in since 1999.
The firm has added 20 employees at the new office for a total of 53, she said. The injection molder and tube extruder has annual sales of $151 million and has had an average annual growth rate of 15 percent since 1992.
MPC has manufacturing sites in Walworth, Richland Center and Prairie du Chien, Wis.; and Santa Ana, Mexico, with sales offices in Tokyo, Walworth and Southfield.
HuhtamÃ¤ki opens facility in Vietnam
ESPOO, FINLAND - Global consumer packaging producer HuhtamÃ¤ki Oyj has launched its first flexible packaging plant in Vietnam.
The 194,000-square-foot facility, which opened May 8, is near Ho Chi Minh City and employs 300. The plant makes high-performance flexible packaging for food and other markets, according to the Espoo-based company.
HuhtamÃ¤ki has operated a flexibles plant in Samut Sakhon, Thailand, since 1997. The company decided to expand to Vietnam because of rapid economic growth in the area, to follow moves by many of its major food-processing customers and because of the success of the Thai plant.
``Vietnam offers a unique combination of rapid growth, social stability and an excellent demographic profile for both production and consumption. It is quickly becoming an important food exporter,'' said Chief Executive Officer Timo Peltola.
The company started planning the 20 million euro ($24 million) project in 2002.
Employees for the Vietnam plant were trained at the Thai operation, said Tony Combe, HuhtamÃ¤ki's executive vice president for Asia, Oceania and Africa. In the region, the company also runs flexibles plants in India and New Zealand.
RC2 Corp. expanding through acquisitions
OAK BROOK, ILL. - RC2 Corp. plans to expand its businesses that make vehicle replicas and infant play products with two acquisitions.
The Oak Brook firm said June 7 it will acquire Playing Mantis, a designer and marketer of collectible vehicle replicas. The Mishawaka, Ind., company had sales of $28.5 million last year. RC2 agreed to pay $17 million in cash and $2.5 million in RC2 common shares. An additional $4 million will be paid if the acquired business meets financial targets this year and in 2005.
In addition, RC2 plans to pay about $136.8 million for First Years of Avon, Mass. The company, which develops and markets infant care and play products, had sales of $138.9 million for the year ended March 31. RC2 hopes to complete the transaction by the end of September.
RC2 had sales of $61.3 million for its first quarter, ended March 31. Sales were up 44 percent compared with a year earlier, reflecting the firm's purchase of Learning Curve International in early 2003.
Net profit at $2.9 million was flat. RC2's Learning Curve business primarily sells dolls and accessories. Its Racing Champions and Ertl Collectibles businesses make plastic and die-cast metal vehicle replicas.