Rubbermaid to lay off 200 Kan. workers
WINFIELD, KAN. - Rubbermaid Home Products Inc. is laying off 200 workers at its Winfield injection molding plant as parent company Newell Rubbermaid Inc. follows through on a companywide restructuring.
``The indications to us are that there are no plans to close. But through restructuring, there was a reduction in workforce,'' said Leroy Alsup, economic development director with Cowley County.
Rubbermaid Home Products officials in Winfield and in the unit's Fairlawn, Ohio, headquarters did not return calls. The firm employed 500 in Winfield, Alsup said.
The housewares maker has two facilities in Winfield, according to Newell's 2004 annual report. In July the company announced the closure of its Goodyear, Ariz., molding site.
Plasticon buys Pro-Mold, to expand
LEXINGTON, KY. - Plasticon International Inc. has acquired injection molder Pro-Mold Inc. of St. Louis, its first captive manufacturing facility, and has plans to double production in the Gateway City.
Publicly held Plasticon of Lexington designs and distributes concrete accessories, transportation signage, plastic lumber and office supplies. But it has not handled its own manufacturing, said Jim Turek, president and chief executive officer.
Started in 1987, Pro-Mold is owned by John Murphy and will retain all senior management, Turek said. It employs nearly 50. Turek, in Aug. 4 by telephone, said Pro-Mold has integrated closed-loop systems with programmable logic control in addition to the advanced drying, heating and cooling equipment.
Plasticon itself has grown recently, announcing in June that post-tension construction cable supplier R&S Manufacturing increased its order for plastic rebar supports by 50 percent. That same month, Plasticon said it created a new blend of polypropylene that reduces the material costs of its short recycled plastic rebar supports by more than 20 percent.
``We're uniting the entire process so that we no longer contract manufacture,'' Turek said of his firm's decision to buy Pro-Mold.
Fortron plant to lead world PPS capacity
WILMINGTON, N.C. - After thinking it over, Fortron Industries decided to put its new polyphenylene sulfide capacity in with its existing capacity in Wilmington.
Fortron, a 50-50 joint venture between resin makers Ticona and Kureha Chemical Industries Ltd., will double capacity in Wilmington, creating a plant with annual PPS capacity of about 33 million pounds. The expanded plant will be the world's largest PPS manufacturing site, officials said.
The $65 million project ``will help satisfy the growing demand for PPS worldwide in the electrical, electronics, automotive, aerospace, industrial, consumer and other markets,'' Fortron President Fred Daniell said in a news release.
Global PPS consumption is growing at an annual rate of 10 percent, Daniell added.
Fortron conducted a global site search, but Wilmington ultimately was chosen for the expansion because of its overall business environment, transportation system and skilled worker base, Ticona President Lyndon Cole said. Fortron has operated its plant there since 1993.
Another major PPS maker, Chevron Phillips Chemical Co. LLC of The Woodlands, Texas, also recently announced a capacity addition. It is doubling capacity at its Borger, Texas, plant.
Carlisle closing Pennsylvania facility
LAKE CITY, PA. - While it seeks a buyer for its automotive parts business, Carlisle Cos. plans to close an injection molding plant in Lake City.
Carlisle plans to shutter the operation by the end of this year, according to an Associated Press article. The report stated about 300 workers will be affected by the closure, the first phase of which will begin in September. Company officials did not return repeated telephone calls seeking comment.
The plant is part of the Carlisle Engineered Products business, a $200 million-a-year unit that Carlisle has publicly stated it hopes to sell. The Lake City operation has 43 thermoplastic injection presses with clamping forces from 75-700 tons, according to information posted on Carlisle Engineered's Web site. The 96,800-square-foot facility also houses thermoset injection presses up to 500 tons.