Machining equipment at the HPM plant in Mount Gilead, Ohio, will get auctioned off March 29, in what could be the final chapter in the 134-year history of the maker of plastics and die-casting equipment.
The plant shut down in December 2009.
Court-appointed receiver Christopher Parker said the auction will include equipment inside the factory. The 400,000-square-foot building is not part of the auction, he said.
Proceeds from the auction will go into a joint account under the receiver and the auctioneer, said Parker, a Toledo lawyer who was named the receiver in a court case in Franklin County Common Pleas Court in Columbus. The judge will allocate how the money will be paid out to creditors, he said.
About a year ago, Morrow County Prosecutor Charles Howland issued a news release saying equipment and inventory at the HPM plant has been appraised at between $6 million and $8.2 million.
Howland could not be reached for comment for this story.
HPM, which was owned by Christopher Filos, owes money to several creditors, including Huntington National Bank for loans, to Morrow County for unpaid taxes and to state government agencies.
Houston-based Plant & Machinery Inc. will conduct the auction, both on-site in Mount Gilead and online. The factory has some specialized equipment for machining very large parts. According to Plant & Machinery, the machinery includes a Weingartner whirling machine, equipment for making large screws of more than 13 inches in diameter and a thread roller for tie rods up to 24 inches in diameter. The auction will include intellectual property.
Robert Braman, president of Plant & Machinery, described the HPM intellectual property: It includes use of the company name, all of the drawings, all of the engineering, also any customer lists, the supplier list, and employee list anything that they have in their files that related to the manufacturing line, and to the parts business in the field, he said.
Braman said the intellectual property and certain pieces of equipment are available for pre-sale before the auction.
HPM made injection molding machines, sheet extrusion lines and die-casting machines. The firm was founded in Mount Gilead in 1877 to make apple presses.