JCI to shut injection molding plant
GLENDALE, WIS. — Johnson Controls Inc. is closing one of its two injection molding facilities in Louisville, Ky., to eliminate excess capacity in its auto interiors group.
The auto supplier, with interiors operations based in Plymouth, Mich., announced the pending closure Dec. 7 to the 440 employees.
The competitive nature of the auto industry means the company cannot afford to keep excess capacity running, said JCI spokeswoman Debra Lacey in a Dec. 10 telephone interview.
Some of the workers will have an opportunity to move to positions at JCI's second Louisville facility. The exact number of openings at the other site has not been determined yet, she said.
The plant is scheduled to close in February.
JCI is based in the Glendale, a Milwaukee suburb.
Moriroku boosts US capacity for Honda
TOKYO — Auto supplier Moriroku Group is in the midst of expansions to make parts for Honda Motor Co. Ltd.'s U.S. operations.
Moriroku's Rainsville Technology Inc. is investing $3.3 million for additional floor space at its injection molding plant in Rainsville, Ala. The facility will also add 30 jobs to its current employment base of 450 workers.
The expansion was previously announced in June, when RTI received a tax abatement of more than $170,000 for sales and property taxes from the Rainsville City Council.
Tokyo-based Moriroku's Greenville Technology Inc. in Greenville, Ohio, is also in the midst of an expansion, investing $21.4 million to build a new injection molding plant in Anderson, Ind., which will also make parts for Honda.
Ravago Americas buys PET distributors
ORLANDO, FLA. — Ravago Holdings Americas has acquired a pair of PET resin distributors — Burcham International Corp. and Meckler and Associates.
In a Dec. 12 news release, Ravago officials described Columbia, S.C.-based Burcham as a leading distributor of PET in North America with “well-established relationships with plastic sheet makers and North America's largest producers of PET.”
Meckler, based in Menands, N.Y., resells both virgin and recycled PET to converters, according to the release. Burcham founder Randy Burcham and Meckler founder Peter Meckler will remain with the businesses, which will become part of Ravago's H. Muehlstein & Co. unit focusing on large-volume resale of commodity polymers in the Americas. The Meckler business will be run from Ravago's office in Wilton, Conn.
Orlando-based Ravago Holdings Americas has been involved with five deals since late 2011. It is a unit of plastics conglomerate Ravago Group of Brussels.
Geotextiles maker Agru expanding in SC
GEORGETOWN, S.C. — Geotextiles producer Agru America Inc. is investing $39.1 million to expand operations in South Carolina.
Agru America, of Georgetown, makes linear low density and high density polyethylene liners and geotextiles using flat-die extrusion calendering and other processes. It also makes pipe and fittings.
The $19.2 million Georgetown project includes a 40,000-square-foot addition to Agru's plant there and new production equipment. It will create 49 new jobs, according to a Dec. 12 news release issued by South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.
Agru also is expanding a plant in Andrews, S.C., which it acquired in January. The $19.9 million program will create 77 new jobs in the production of needle-punched, non-woven textiles.
Agru also is expanding its Fernley, Nev., plant by adding coextrusion capacity to meet demand in the mining industry.
Agru Kunststofftechnik GmbH of Bad Hall, Austria, is the parent company.
— Minneapolis-based HDI Plastics Inc. will construct a $4 million plastics recycling facility in Eastland, Texas, in 2013, according to a report in the Abilene Reporter-News. The firm signed an agreement with Eastland Economic Development Corp. for a 75,000-square-foot facility, which initially will employ 75, the report said. HDI collects and reprocesses plastic waste and sells pellets to manufacturers. … This the the last regular issue of Plastics News in 2012. Watch for our “Market Data Book” on Dec. 24. PN's next regular issue will come out Jan. 7.