Ohio will meet Paris when Owens Corning and Saint-Gobain Group merge their reinforcements units into a new company with annual sales of $1.8 billion.
Toledo, Ohio-based OC will contribute its reinforcements business to the new firm, while Paris-based Saint-Gobain will provide its reinforcement and composites unit, which operates as Vetrotex. The new firm will be based in Toledo and will be called Owens Corning-Vetrotex Reinforcements.
Owens Corning-Vetrotex will employ 10,000 at facilities in North America, South America, Europe and Asia. The merger is expected to close in early 2007.
Vetrotex makes glass fiber used in polymer reinforcement and other industrial areas. The firm also makes long-glass-fiber-reinforced pellets. Owens Corning's reinforcements business makes chopped strands, fibers, rovings and similar products for the recreation, construction and marine markets. Products made by both firms are used with a variety of plastic resins.
The agreement is not definite, but plans call for a structure with 60 percent OC ownership. After a minimum of four years, Saint-Gobain would have the option to sell its 40 percent to OC. Chuck Dana, currently president of OC's composite solutions business, would serve as chief executive officer of Owens Corning-Vetrotex. The new firm's board of directors would consist of three OC members and two from Saint-Gobain.
In a July 27 news release, officials with both companies said the deal is being made ``to bring together two pioneers in the reinforcements and composite fabrics industry, each with long histories of product innovation and customer focus.'' The new firm is expected to offer improved geographic scale, an expanded product base and combined technological expertise, officials said.
Saint-Gobain posted sales of $41.6 billion in 2005, while Owens Corning's sales total was around $6.3 billion.