Toilet maker Ecoflo acquires rotomolder
NARANGBA, AUSTRALIA - The acquisition of a plastics rotational molding company will help the Australian manufacturer of environmentally friendly toilets expand into markets for other ``green'' products.
Ecoflo Queensland Pty. Ltd., based at Narangba, north of Brisbane, has announced it has completed a US$242,000 purchase of Queensland RotoMoulders Pty Ltd., also based at Narangba.
Ecoflo markets a range of waterless toilets for domestic and commercial use, gray water systems (recycled household/industrial water) and composting bins.
Ecoflo Managing Director Stuart Elliott said the company had been sourcing plastic components from QRM for 13 years, primarily items made from recycled polyethylene.
He said all Ecoflo's ``Nature Loo'' composting, waterless toilets - accounting for half the company's sales - were made by QRM.
``QRM also supplies Ecoflo with a gray water system, most of which is rotomolded,'' he said. ``The waterless toilets and gray water systems are made for people who are environmentally conscious and contain only recycled polymer. Using recycled polymer is part of the package the customers buy into. Green products do not need to be more expensive.''
Elliott estimated the combined annual sales of both companies at more than US$1.61 million, with QRM contributing around US$565,000.
He said the opportunity to buy 15-year-old QRM, sparked by the retirement of its previous owners, meant Ecoflo could explore new products and markets.
``The focus will be rotomolded products for the solar power, composting and water saving or trapment industries,'' he said.
``Products are being developed in-house. We are also widening our network of small-scale custom molding activities with a green focus.''
Elliott said QRM supplied a vast range of products, from manhole covers to cable boxes.
Prettl putting plant in N. Korean city
KAESONG, NORTH KOREA - European automotive and electronics components manufacturer Prettl Group is building an auto parts plant in Kaesong.
This month, Prettl of Neuruppin, Germany, began construction of the 119,000-square-foot facility, located in an industrial complex run jointly with South Korea and near the border between the countries. Prettl is one of the first Western companies to invest in the communist state.
The plant will turn out a range of electronic and other automotive components and is expected to come on stream in October.
Prettl, with 25 production units in 12 countries and annual 2007 sales of around US$732 million, also plans to invest in the Tatarstan region of Russia. It aims to spend some US$18 million to establish a local automotive parts operation to supply Tatarstan's vehicle manufacturing industry.
In a second stage, Prettl intends to add a components unit aimed at the region's home appliance sector, according to Chief Executive Officer Rolf Prettl.
In 2007, the company expanded its offshoot Prettl Molding Automotive Polska sp.zoo in Bydgoszcz, Poland, with the acquisition of Polish electrical equipment firm Elda-Eltra Elektrotechnika SA, also located in Bydgoszcz. Prettl added 10 injection molding machines and a mold shop to its main operation.
Mobis parts factory coming to Russia
ST. PETERSBURG, RUSSIA - Hyundai Mobis, the auto components subsidiary of South Korea's Hyundai Kia Automotive Group, is building a US$100 million parts plant in St. Petersburg.
The new investment follows Hyundai Motor Co.'s announcement that it expects to break ground in mid-2008 in a project to build a car assembly plant in St. Petersburg's Kamenka industrial zone. Aimed at the European market, it is due to reach output of 100,000 cars annually by September 2010.
As part of a major push to expand production worldwide, Mobis already is building another components facility in the Czech Republic, due on stream in 2009, in support of a Hyundai Motor 300,000-vehicle-per-year assembly plant in Nosovice.
In addition, Mobis is expanding in China and the United States in support of Hyundai and Kia car production.
The Korean parts maker was due to complete its second facility in Beijing, China, this year, which will turn out key modules including driver's seats, chassis and front-end modules for Beijing Hyundai Motor. With this extra capacity, Mobis will supply various parts for more than one million units per year.
Apart from eight Korean plants, Mobis already operates four more in China, India, Slovakia and the United States.