Volume 35, Number 12, December 2000

Weise Acquires Assets of F. Barkow Trucks

John Weise, former vice president of marketing and sales for F. Barkow Trucks of Milwaukee, Wis., purchased the assets of the company on June 1, 2000. In his new position, Weise will lead the company as president. Excited about the acquisition, Weise said he had planned to buy the company for awhile and was able to complete the deal in June. "We have a couple of competitors out there, but I think we have a reputation for being one of the highest quality glass carriers," Weise said.

Binks Now a Part

The Binks line of automated equipment including reciprocators, chain-on-edge spindle machines and replacement parts, has become part of ITW BGK Finishing Systems, a division of Illinois Tool Works. IGW BGK of Minneapolis will be responsible for all aspects of the line, now known as Binks Automatic Equipment, including new equipment quotations, availability of replacement parts, customer service, order entry, technical service, manufacturing, assembly, shipping and field service. Current Binks distributors will continue to have access to the existing product line through ITW BGK.

C.R. Laurence Forms New Display Division

Los Angeles-based C.R. Laurence Co. Inc. (CRL) is branching out. The company recently formed a new division to focus solely on the store fixture and display industry. Bob Carlson, former glass group manager for the International Aluminum Corp., will lead the new division as manager. The division will expand CRL's current line of store fixture and display products, including pivot hinges, sliding and/or swinging glass door locks, cabinet glass door locks, plunger and cylinder locks, set screw pulls and stand-offs. In addition, CRL recently introduced a product that will fit right in with the new division--the Cable Display System.

Donald E. Friese, president and chief executive officer for CRL, said he hopes the new venture will be just the beginning of CRL's expansion into the store fixture and display industry. "With the help of this new division, we will be developing and adding a wide variety of new products and will eventually create a catalog that specifically targets the store fixture and display industry," Friese said.

Glass Door Offers Vending Machines an Advantage; Increases Coca-Cola Sales

The Coca-Cola Co. and Maytag Corp. have designed a new glass front vender, which features an elevator retrieval device that rises to select the chosen product and moves it along a conveyor to the delivery portal. The insulating glass display doors, made by Pike Machine Products of Elizabeth, N.J., allow all activity to be visible through the vender's clear front panel. According to the Coca-Cola Co., research tests confirm that sales through the glass front vender increased by more than 50 percent over traditional venders.

One of the key factors, which drives the increased sales volume, is the enhanced visibility of the beverages, company representatives say. The vending machine by Maytag is manufactured at Maytag Commercial Solutions Group's Dixie-Narco manufacturing plant in South Carolina. Through an exclusive agreement with Maytag, the venders will only be available through the Coca-Cola Co. and its bottlers.

Tambest Group Gets Plans Underway
to Relocate in 2001

Finland's Tambest Group, which includes Glassrobots Oy and Tambest Oy, is planning to move into a new facility in spring 2001 in Airport City, Finland. The move will bring both segments together under the same roof in 6,300-square- meters of space.

Premdor Purchases Masonite from International Paper Company

Premdor Inc. of Toronto has signed a definitive agreement to acquire the Chicago-based Masonite Corp. from the International Paper Co. The purchase price is $523 million and is subject to certain closing adjustments, according to Premdor. As of June 30, 2000, Masonite's net value was $558 million. The companies are now awaiting regulatory approval of the transaction.

According to Premdor's statement, Masonite's net sales for the fiscal year ending December 31, 1999 were $301 million, and $154 million for the six months ending June 30, 2000. In addition, Masonite's EBITDA and EBIT for the same periods were $69 million (23 percent of net sales) and $35 million (15 percent) respectively for the six months ending June 30, 2000.

Premdor expects the transaction to significantly increase its margins. Had the combination been completed January 1, 2000, Premdor says its EBITDA and EBIT margins on a pro-forma basis would have been 16 percent and 12 percent respectively for the six months ending June 30, 2000. In comparison, Premdor's EBITDA and EBIT margins were 9 percent and 7 percent respectively for the same

"The combination of Masonite and Premdor will create a more profitable, vertically integrated, international building products company, and will lead to tremendous opportunities for the company. Masonite is one of the most recognized and respected names in the building products industry and a leader in wood composite products," said Philip S. Orsino, president and chief executive officer for
Premdor. "The two companies' vertical integration and combined strengths will lead to enhanced growth
opportunities, a more diverse product offering, more new and innovative products and improved customer service," he added.

FTC Warns Small Businesses
to Beware of Scams

The Federal Trade Commission recently reported that small businesses are often targeted by scam artists offering them discounted office supplies, even moreso than in the past. It is in the process of warning small businesses to beware of offers such as these from suspicious sources. In addition, it has discovered numerous scams involving phone invoices, incorrect phone bills and requests for donations from nonexistent charities or nonprofit