Another plastics business is slated to move in after Victor Plastics Inc. vacates its Kalona, Iowa, plant.
Engineered Plastic Components Inc. is buying the Kalona facility plus most of the injection presses there for undisclosed terms. EPC plans to restart the operation July 2, right after Victor Plastics' commitment ends on a molded parts contract with Whirlpool Corp.
EPC signed a purchase agreement with Victor Plastics on May 15 and will begin doing due diligence on the plant June 8, EPC President Reza Kargarzadeh said in a telephone interview. The purchase includes 33 injection presses with clamping forces of 30-1,450 tons. Victor Plastics has 38 at the plant.
Kargarzadeh said the Whirlpool business ``is part of the equation'' of restarting the Kalona plant but he wouldn't provide details of any potential contracts with the appliance major. He plans to employ about 120 at Kalona when EPC takes over the operation. Many of the employees will be local workers laid off by Victor Plastics.
EPC now employs about 120 at its Grinnell, Iowa, headquarters plant and Kargarzadeh said he expects to hire another 50 soon as the operation takes delivery of automotive molds arriving from Michigan. Appliances and automotive are EPC's biggest markets, followed by consumer products.
Victor Plastics Chief Financial Officer Charles Brown said about 70 of the 209 Kalona workers have accepted an offer to work at other Victor Plastics operations in Iowa. They mainly will replace temporary workers in the North Liberty headquarters facility and in the firm's Victor plant.
Victor Plastics decided not to renew its contract to mold refrigerator parts for Whirlpool's Amana, Iowa, operation. Whirlpool acquired the Amana plant last year when it bought Maytag Corp.