Clopay to buy Chinese diaper-film maker
MASON, OHIO Film extruder Clopay Plastic Products Co. has signed a letter of intent to acquire perforated film and nonwovens maker Hangzhou SNT Absorbent Technology Co. Ltd. of Hangzhou, China. Terms were not disclosed.
A Clopay official speaking on condition of anonymity confirmed May 4 that the agreement was signed in early March and the sale is expected to close this summer, pending Chinese government approval. The deal marks Clopay's first foray into manufacturing in China.
Hangzhou SNT extrudes polyethylene film at a 21,500-square-foot factory for personal-care products, particularly disposable diapers, using proprietary machinery, the official said. Mason-based Clopay makes films for diapers, feminine hygiene products, and medical and industrial applications.
The Chinese hygiene market is growing by leaps and bounds, the Clopay official said. [Chinese] migrant workers have lived in the cities over the economic growth era, they picked up habits of using disposable diapers and premium [sanitary] napkins. So now, in the villages and the second-tier cities disposable diapers have seen a 16 percent compounded annual growth rate for the past three years.
The official pegged Hangzhou SNT's sales at less than $5 million and employment at about 60. Plastics News estimates put Clopay's film and sheet sales for fiscal 2008 at $400 million.
DuPont, Tate & Lyle expand bioresins JV
WILMINGTON, DEL. The bioplastics movement continues to roll ahead, with DuPont Co. and Tate & Lyle plc announcing a 35 percent capacity increase at their Bio-PDO resin plant in Loudon, Tenn., by mid-2011.
Construction is set to begin next month, the firms said in a May 4 news release. The project is expected to create a small number of permanent jobs, said DuPont spokeswoman Michelle Reardon. The firms declined to reveal more information.
To date, Wilmington-based DuPont and Tate & Lyle of London have invested $100 million on the project.
We had record sales last year and are already anticipating the need for additional capacity after just three years of operation, said DuPont Tate & Lyle Bio Products LLC President Steve Mirshak.
Most of the expansion consists of new processing equipment that will grow annual capacity at the site from its current level of 100 million pounds, Reardon said.
The joint venture plant shares a site with a pair of Tate & Lyle agricultural processing plants, including a corn wet mill that supplies the venture with all of its sugar feedstock needs. Bio-based propanediol made at the plant is derived from corn rather than petroleum-based feedstocks. It's used as an ingredient in DuPont's Sorona-brand renewably sourced polymer.
Jayco to reopen Indiana RV operation
MIDDLEBURY, IND. A recovering recreational vehicle market has prompted Jayco Inc. to reopen its Topeka, Ind., plant and hire as many as 50 workers by the end of this year.
The Topeka site is part of Jayco's Starcraft RV division. Middlebury-based Jayco had consolidated Starcraft operations at its headquarters there when the market slowed. Now it will begin to shift production lines back, beginning with 2011 Autumn Ridge travel trailers, the firm said in a May 6 news release.
The year has started off on a pace well-ahead of last year both in shipping and in retail sales activity, said Jim Jacobs, Starcraft RV general manager. We continue to be optimistic that 2010 will be a much improved year for our industry.
Jayco expects to have production restored at Topeka within 18 months, with four assembly lines and two side operations.
Palm Plastics halts production in Mich.
MORENCI, MICH. Custom injection molder Palm Plastics Ltd. will temporarily halt production at its Morenci headquarters plant for up to 90 days.
Some of the workers in Morenci will be able to transfer to Palm's facility in Bowling Green, Ohio, during the duration of the shutdown, said David Munson, corporate relations director. The company employs a total of about 150.
Work will begin in August for existing contracts, he said.
Palm makes pallets as well as items for the housewares, medical and military industries.
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