ACH investing $32M in new equipment
SALINE, MICH. Automotive Components Holdings LLC plans to spend $32 million on new equipment for its Saline plant this year to boost production of a spray urethane skin used on interior trim panels.
The company a wholly owned subsidiary of Dearborn, Mich.-based Ford Motor Co. also has steadily boosted employment in Saline to 2,000 up from 1,600 workers less than two years ago.
ACH has applied to the state of Michigan for a brownfield redevelopment tax credit to help finance the work, spokeswoman Della DiPietro said in an April 15 telephone interview. The Saline plant was initially part of a spinoff of Ford parts plants into Visteon Corp. in 2000, but Ford later took it back under the ACH umbrella as part of a plan to sell it.
Even as earlier planned sales fell through, Ford has continued to invest in the site with $120 million in new equipment and improvements between 2005 and 2009 and made it a key supplier.
The Saline plant makes the spray urethane skin on door panels for the 2010 Taurus, which Ford designed to mimic hand-sewn leather. The new equipment now set for the site will allow the company to add another production line for the skin and expand production both for the Taurus and other future vehicles, DiPietro said.
Management acquires Hoover IBC group
HOUSTON A management buyout has put Hoover Group Inc., the holding company for Hoover Materials Handling Group, back in local hands, the company said April 15. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
In a news release, the Houston-based company, which makes intermediate bulk containers, said a group led by CEO Donald Young purchased a controlling interest in Hoover from a subsidiary of Citigroup Inc.
The management-led buyout received the financial backing of several industry executives in the Houston area and the consent of PNC Bank, the lender under Hoover's revolving credit facility.
Under management-led, independent ownership, our company's attention and capital will be solely focused on the continuous improvement of Hoover's industry-leading, high-quality products and the expansion of our customer service capabilities and product offering, Young said in the release.
Hoover is mainly known for its stainless-steel IBCs. However, the company rotational molds from polyethylene the APR line of 257- and 330-gallon IBCs for food and commercial chemical applications, as well as the 250-gallon PE bottle for the Polycone 45 stainless-steel liquid-dispensing system.
TigerHawk Profiles restarts closed plant
KEOSAUQUA, IOWA At the end of 2008, profile and sheet extruder TigerHawk Profiles shuttered its plant in Fairfield, Iowa, a sign of the times as orders declined and the economy was on an unpredictable path. Now, the company has restarted production at the 42,000-square-foot plant.
This week is our first week of operation, said Ted Richardson, TigerHawk's director of marketing and business development, in an April 14 telephone interview.
According to its Web site, TigerHawk Profiles was created from the combination of two southern Iowa-based profile extruders, TigerHawk Profiles formerly J&B Plastics in Fairfield, and TigerHawk Profiles in Keosauqua which had been operated as Eagle Plastics. The two companies merged in 2006.
The firm's end markets include refrigeration, office furniture and accessories, marine, medical, appliance, and agricultural.
By the end of 2008, Our overall production between both facilities had decreased to a level where it made sense to put production in one facility, Richardson said. Things have turned around. We're seeing an increase in orders across the board. We're also lucky enough to add on additional business.
The plant is operating with roughly six employees and two shifts. Officials restarted two lines, but are reticent about purchasing new equipment.
Before we go out and purchase new equipment, we want to make sure that the trends continue and it's not just a blip, Richardson said. I have confidence that the climate will continue. We're just watching the economy and seeing how everything goes.
Copyright 2010 Crain Communications Inc. All Rights Reserved.