Hi-Tech Hose and Duravent merging
LONDON - Two lightweight hose and duct companies have merged to create what they claim is the largest North American player in the market.
Hi-Tech Hose Inc. and Duravent were combined to form Hi-Tech Duravent, the firms recently announced. The merger became effective in the summer, after Flexible Technologies, the owner of Duravent, acquired Hi-Tech Hose for £9 million ($15.6 million). Global engineering firm Smiths Group plc of London owns Flexible Technologies.
Hi-Tech Duravent has manufacturing plants in Georgetown, Mass., where it is based, and in Plymouth, Ind., and Abbeville, S.C. It also runs six warehouses across North America. Hi-Tech Duravent marketing manager Susanna Vandenberg said there are no plans to close any operations the two companies brought to the merger.
Applications for Hi-Tech Duravent products include air ventilation, dust collection, light material handling, street cleaning and high-temperature fume collection.
Excelsior opening North Carolina plant
YONKERS, N.Y. - Flexible packaging producer Excelsior Packaging Group of Yonkers, N.Y., will open a 235,000-square-foot production site in Transylvania County, N.C., near Asheville, in 2006.
The company will make the site the production headquarters for a new product marketed as SteamFast, a technology that allows consumers to steam-cook food in their microwaves, according to a news release.
Excelsior Chief Executive Officer Ron Shemesh did not respond to several requests for comment.
According to a news release from North Carolina Gov. Mike Easley's office, Excelsior pioneered the technology in Europe.
The firm has been in business since 1946 and makes packaging for several end markets including medical, food and consumer.
E-Z Set to make septic tanks in N.C.
HAYMARKET, VA. - Septic tank supplier E-Z Set Co. plans to set up a polypropylene tank operation in Rocky Mount, N.C.
E-Z Set and local development officials announced the project Nov. 22. They said the company will set up in a 76,000-square-foot, vacant textile building that E-Z Set is buying. E-Z Set is based in Haymarket.
President Carl Perry declined to provide details of the project during a recent interview. He said publicity surrounding the announcement was premature and caused concern among subcontractors. E-Z Set owns molds for the tanks but has relied on subcontractors to make the products.
The Greenville Daily Reflector quoted Perry as saying most of his firm's production has been in Ohio and Pennsylvania. Perry said by telephone that further information will be available early next year after the plant's equipment is delivered.
The firm chose Rocky Mount because an affordable production plant is available, and growth in coastal North Carolina has boosted demand for septic systems.
E-Z Set expects to create 50 jobs in initial stages of the Rocky Mount program, with staffing reaching 100 over four years. North Carolina's Eastern Region Partnership program granted the company $25,000 to help buy the building.
Fate of KlÃ¶ckner's Dutch site uncertain
WEERT, NETHERLANDS - Film producer KlÃ¶ckner Pentaplast GmbH & Co. KG is weighing the future of its Weert plant in the face of continued losses.
KlÃ¶ckner, based in Montabaur, Germany, said in a Nov. 30 news release that the film extrusion plant has had losses for years, despite investments and various restructurings. KlÃ¶ckner employs 400 at the site.
``Due to a very competitive environment, the considerable cost base and small margins realized by the Dutch operations, efforts to turn the tide have been unsuccessful,'' the company said in the release.
Caroline Funk, KlÃ¶ckner's vice president of strategic marketing and communications, said in a Dec. 1 e-mail that various options are under review, and no final decision has been made.
Should the site close, its work will be transferred.
``But first things first, we have just commenced discussions with works council and trade union about the future of the plant,'' she said. ``We expect that a decision will either be made by the end of this year or January 2006.''