Albis closing Texas compounding site
HAMBURG, GERMANY - Albis Plastics GmbH is closing its engineering resin compounding plant in Rosenberg, Texas.
No reason for the closing was provided in a May 23 news release from Hamburg-based Albis, and officials could not be reached for comment. The Rosenberg site employed 170 and did proprietary and toll compounding of engineering resins on 13 extrusion lines.
Albis had operated a distribution unit from the site as well but sold that business to Ashland Distribution in May 2005, leaving the compounding unit on its own. The combined distribution/compounding unit posted sales of $90 million in 2002, the last year for which totals were available.
The company said North American customers will be supplied from the firm's European compounding operations. No date was listed for the closing of the Rosenberg site.
Vinyl record maker enters receivership
DUNMORE, PA. - Vinyl record manufacturer Twenty First Century Media LLC has closed its manufacturing plant in Dunmore and filed for receivership, leaving roughly 90 people out of work. The company was one of the four largest vinyl record manufacturers in the U.S., according to one of its investors.
Receivership is a form of bankruptcy in which a company seeks to avoid liquidation by reorganizing with the help of a court-appointed trustee. Judge Thomas Munley of the Court of Common Pleas for Lackawanna County appointed Robert P. Shiels Jr. of Shiels Law Associates PC in Clarks Green, Pa., to oversee the company's operations during receivership.
The first court hearing to discuss the company's future will be held in June, his office said.
The record manufacturer was granted receivership May 19. Last week, several workers filed complaints with the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry's Bureau of Labor Law Compliance that they did not receive their final paychecks, according to department spokeswoman Lisa Aaron.
Twenty First Century - formerly known as 33 1/3 RPM - began operations in 2002, when several investors acquired the vinyl record-making equipment of the shuttered Olyphant, Pa., manufacturing plant of WEA Manufacturing. WEA since has been acquired by Toronto-based Cinram International Inc.
Plant manager Jeff Bowers did not return phone calls. The company and its predecessors, under a number of different names and owners, had made vinyl records in the Scranton, Pa., area since the 1940s, according to one source.
England's RPC launches first U.S. plant
HIGHAM FERRERS, ENGLAND - European bottle maker RPC Group plc of Higham Ferrers has opened its first injection molding facility in the United States, with a $13 million investment.
RPC Bramlage WIKO-USA Inc. held a grand opening May 25 at the 65,000-square-foot site in Morgantown, Pa., where it employs 25, officials said. The plant will make rigid plastic packaging for several end markets including cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, consumer technical products and food.
The company also named Morgantown, Pa., as the site of its North American headquarters. Gov. Ed Rendell's office said the move will bring at least 102 new jobs, including relocation of employees from the unit's sales office in Exton, Pa., which it has operated since 1997.
Officials said the site, which RPC purchased, has been equipped with a view toward strengthening the company's presence in North America.
In a news release, Mark Zolty, president of RPC Bramlage WIKO-US, said the company is a global supplier with several multinational customers.
RPC is receiving economic incentives including a Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority loan of as much as $1.04 million, a $500,000 loan through the Machinery and Equipment Loan Fund, a $250,000 Opportunity Grant, $150,000 in training assistance funds and $306,000 in job creation tax credits.
PolyPipe finishing multiple expansions
GAINESVILLE, TEXAS - Gainesville-based PolyPipe Inc. completed a capacity expansion at both of its extrusion facilities in Texas this spring and expects to complete another expansion in July.
PolyPipe officials said in a news release that they added about 15 percent capacity at the plants in Gainesville and Roaring Springs, Texas.
The firm, which makes small- and large-diameter high density polyethylene pipe for a variety of markets including oil and gas distribution, natural gas distribution and other industrial uses, also is building its seventh U.S. plant, in Evansville, Wyo.
The company also is finishing up a large-diameter pipe expansion in Fernley, Nev.
PolyPipe is the second-largest manufacturer of PE pressure pipe in the United States.