Myers Industries Inc. is considering changes to its automotive and custom business unit, including the possible sale of some or all of the four companies in that division.
The division includes both plastics and rubber processing companies, with Ameri-Kart's rotational molding and vacuum forming, injection molding within Michigan Rubber Products and blow molding in WEK Industries. The fourth unit set for possible sale is the Buckhorn Rubber business.
The automotive unit was the only division within Akron, Ohio-based Myers to post a loss in the first quarter of 2009 a loss of $2.9 million on sales of $27.1 million, according to documents filed May 1 with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The same division listed $1.5 million in profit in the first quarter of 2008 on sales of $46.39 million.
The company blamed significant volume declines from the division's customers, which include manufacturers in the automotive, recreational vehicle, marine and heavy-truck industries.
Myers posted overall sales of $190 million for the quarter, down from nearly $250 million a year earlier, with a profit of $5.1 million for 2009 compared to $10.3 million for 2008.
On May 4, the company announced it is reviewing strategic options for the division, which could mean further restructuring or a sale. Myers said it will provide further information on the units' future once it completes the review.
Myers has announced previous shutdowns and changes related to the companies it is now reviewing.
In March it said it would close an Ameri-Kart rotational molding facility in Fostoria, Ohio, during the second quarter of this year.
It also has set a manufacturing optimization program for another of its business units, the materials-handling group, which includes injection molding, thermoforming, structural foam, blow molding and rotational molding. It has not specified what that will include, but the unit includes both the Buckhorn and Akro-Mils businesses.
Buckhorn, which makes pallets and materials-handling equipment, is a separate business unit than Buckhorn Rubber Products, which makes air-intake hoses and bellows, and boots for the auto industry.