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Spartech acquires Lustro Plastics for $10.4 million

Spartech Corp. has bolstered its market share in glycol-modified PET sheet by acquiring Lustro Plastics Co. for $10.4 million. Spartech already has plans to upgrade equipment at Lustro.

PET represents only about 2 percent of the 500 million pounds of material that Spartech Plastics, the company's extruded sheet and roll stock division, uses every year. More than 95 percent of Lustro's sheet and film are made using PETG.

Lustro operates one plant in Evanston, IL., with six extrusion lines. Spartech expects to retain all 125 employees.

The investment of $1.5 million to $2 million will involve replacing some existing lines with newer equipment. With annual sales of about $28 million, Lustro also serves the electronic and medical packaging markets. The Evanston facility will be added to Spartech Plastics' existing 17 plants.

Spartech employs about 1,600 and operates nearly 100 sheet production lines. The firm uses about 500 million pounds of ABS, polystyrene, polyethylene, polycarbonate, acrylic and PET to make sheet and film for industries ranging from food packaging to appliance, automotive and marine products.

Madison Buys John Brown Plastics Machinery for $62 million

Madison Capital Partners, a Chicago investment group that owns several plastics processors and other equipment companies, is paying $62 million for five of John Brown Plastics Machinery's six units.

The deal includes five businesses: Brown Machine, a maker manufacturer of thermoforming machinery in Beaverton, MI., Epco of Fremont, OH, which remanufactures plastics machinery; Cumberland Engineering of South Attleboro, MA, a granulator supplier; Berlinger, which makes pelletizers and screen changers in Marblehead, MA; and Leesona, which makes textile winders in Burlington, NC.

Those companies generate total sales of about $100 million a year. Madison elected not to purchase the other John Brown business, injection molding press builder Negri Bossi SpA of Milan, Italy.

Madison owns several other machinery companies. The largest ones are Holcroft, Detroit company that makes heat-treating furnaces for automakers, and Pacific Press Technologies in Mount Carmel, Il., which builds presses for metal stamping and compression molding of plastic composites.

Madison's subsidiary, Plastics Group, owns four processors; Pawnee Rotational Molding Co. of Maple Plains, MN.; blow molders Borse Industries of Willowbrook, Il.; Fremont Plastic Products of Freemont, OH, and blow molder and rotomolder Wedco Moulded Products of Boucherville, Quebec.

Madison Capital will run the John Brown plastics equipment businesses while Plastics Group will continue to focus on processors.

Two Plastics Sales Marketers Launch New Sales/Service Firm

Two of the plastics industry's sales marketers, formerly with MAAC Machinery and leading injection molding and extrusion machinery firms, have established their own business in what they consider a major void for sales, service and marketing expertise within the plastics industry.

FoxMor Group Inc., Wheaton, IL, is the new sales, service and marketing consulting film started by Roger Fox and David Morgese. Fox is former vice president of sales and Morgese is the former national sales manager of MAAC Machinery Corp., a thermoforming machinery manufacturer in Chicago.

According to Fox and Morgese, what sets this new firm apart is its ability to not only buy and sell equipment, excluding thermoforming machinery, but also provide through the manufacturers complete turnkey packages comprised of comprehensive off-site and on-site training as well as on-site counseling to get the new systems up and running.

Machinery packages being offered to date include injection molding, CNC trimming, blow molding, roto-molding and extrusion. The firm will also focus, in conjunction with a marketing partner, on providing marketing and sales training, guidance and support for firms involved in all plastics processing areas.

"Foxmor has negotiated with several equipment manufacturers to enable us to offer not just the machinery, but also a special package of training to get customers fully up-and-running from purchase to startu," according to David Morgese. "The package offered with the CNC machinery purchase will include training of the purchaser's employees at an off-site location the first week; on site training the second week; preventative maintenance the third week; and during the fourth week, and at no charge, a representative will visit the customer's site to modify and evaluate all tooling fixtures."

The FoxMor Group is a sales and consulting agency that will be dedicated to supporting the major plastics processing industries, specifically thermoforming and injection molding. FoxMor will provide complete systems, including processing machinery, ancillary equipment, tooling and materials, as well as business development services. With more than 25 years of combined plastics industry experience, including capital equipment, sales and marketing, the firm will be dedicated to providing solutions to any manufacturing or marketing challenge which a processor may encounter.

For more information, contact The FoxMore Group in Wheaton, IL: Phone (630) 653-2200; Fax (630) 653-1474 E-Mail


SPI Thermoforming Institute Announces National Award Winners

Products and parts for applications ranging from lifesaving medical devices to mementos of the national pastime were among the winners of The Society of Plastics Industry Inc.'s Thermoforming Institute National Awards (TINA). In all, 13 products were honored in 12 categories.

 The awards recognize superior aesthetics, creativity, functionality and design difficulty of thermoformed plastic parts.

The overall winner was Prent Corporation's Coronary Imaging Catheter Package, a sterile barrier package that suspends and immobilizes a fragile and expensive fiber-optics catheter coil and accessories. The package also serves as a protective shipper, prep station and catheter channel for the product.

Other innovative products honored in the annual awards competition included product displays, food packaging items, an Origami-style promotional package and a package for commemorative figurines for home run legends Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa.

 The 1999 TINA Award Winners

Heavy Gage Category

Thermoformed Assembly
Metacom Music Station, Brookdale Plastics
Plymouth, MN.

Thermoformed Part
Cotton Picker Door Assemblies - Triangle Plastics Independence, IA.

Pressure Formed Assembly
Heart Laser Cart - Thermo-Fab Corp.
Shirley, MA.

Pressure Formed Part
Teacher Board - Thermo-Fab Corp.
Shirley, MA

Twin Sheet
Assembly Twin Sheet Sleeve for Big Pak - TriEnda Corp. Portage, WI.

Twin Sheet Part
VTC Upper Body - Kintz Plastics
Howes Caves, NY.

Light Gage Category

Food Packaging
Quiche Base/Lid - Plastic Ingenuity
Cross Plains, WI
Dolphin Candy Clamshell - Plastic Package
Sacramento, CA.

Industrial Packaging
In-House Shipping Tray - Plastic Ingenuity
Cross Plains, WI.

Consumer Packaging
1998 Promotional Package - Prent Corp.
Janesville, WI.

Medical Packaging
Coronary Imaging Catheter Package - Prent Corp. Janesville, WI.

Devore Skin Care Display - Plastic Concept
Huntington Beach, CA.

Component Parts
Mark McGwire & Sammy Sosa Commemorative
Figure Package - Plastic Concept
Huntington Beach, CA.


American Plastics Council Will Become Full-Service Resin Manufacturers' Trade Association

The American Plastics Council's Board Chairman Jeffrey Lipton, president and CEO of NOVA Chemicals, has announced that the organization has decided to make APC a full-service resin manufacturers' trade association. Lipton's announcement followed a special meeting of APC's Board and is the result of the failure of negotiations over the past three years between APC and The Society of the Plastics Industry Inc. (SPI) to establish a more formal alliance between the two organizations.

"We are looking forward to building on APC's strengths to create an even stronger and more effective association that represents the interests and needs of resin companies as well as customer," said Lipton. "We are committed to continuing our issues management leadership while serving the greater industry.

"When APC and SPI negotiators met back in December, both sides sincerely tried to reach agreement, but it's clear now that it will not be possible," said Lipton. "We are disappointed, but feel that it is time to move on and do what will best serve resin manufacturers and the plastics industry."

Komo Machine Purchased By Gusmer Machinery Group

Komo Machine Inc. of Sauk Rapids, MN, has been sold to Gusmer Machinery Group of Lakewood, NJ. The sale was finalized on Jan. 26 by the two former owners, Fred and Bob Sexton, who sold their interests in Komo.
"This decision to sell Komo Machine was very difficult for Bob and Fred Sexton," said Roger Reali, president and CEO of Komo, "but it is their serious belief that, with greater financial strength and the resources that GMG offers us, the opportunities we see in the industrial markets we serve can be achieved better over the long term through this sale."
The sale is reported to include all other company holdings of Komo Machine, including the firm's software subsidiary, CIM-TECH of West Chicago, IL, and Kinetek Machine Tool Solutions, a training, parts and service company in Sauk Rapids and Columbus, OH. As part of the conditions for the sale, both Reali and the Sexton brothers will remain in their management positions with the companyfor undisclosed contract periods.
Gusmer Machine Group is an industrial manufacturer of plural component processing equipment for urethane and polyester systems, serving the recreation, appliance, automotive, OEM and building and construction industries.

Plastics Machining & Fabricating
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