Volume 41, Issue 4  - April 2006


Judge Approves $60 Million Settlement Against PPG

PPG Industries Inc. will pay $60 million to settle a lawsuit that alleged the company conspired with other glassmakers to overcharge for flat glass products. 

PPG was the last of six defendants to settle the case, which was filed in 1997 by auto body shops and window manufacturers. 

U.S. District Judge Donetta Ambrose approved the settlement on February 7. PPG denied the price-fixing allegations, but a company spokesperson said it settled to avoid the cost of litigation. 

Plaintiffs alleged that PPG and five other companies, Pilkington PLC; Libbey-Owens-Ford Co. (now Pilkington North America) of Toledo, Ohio; Guardian Industries Corp. of Auburn Hills, Mich.; AFG Industries Inc. of Kingsport, Tenn.; and Ford Motor Co. (Visteon) of Detroit overcharged by about $310 million between 1991 and 1995. 

The other defendants paid about $61 million to settle the cases in 2003 and 2004. 

At press time, PPG was unavailable for comment.

Solutia Inc. Files Plan of Reorganization and Disclosure Statement

Solutia Inc. has filed its plan of reorganization and disclosure statement with the bankruptcy court for the southern district of New York. The filing of the plan was supported by the official committee of unsecured creditors, Monsanto Co., Pharmacia Corp. and the Official Committee of Retirees.

“While we still have much to do in order to complete this process, filing our plan of reorganization takes us one significant step closer to successfully reorganizing Solutia,” said Jeffry N. Quinn, president and chief executive officer. “This plan of reorganization will enable Solutia to emerge from Chapter 11 later this year with an improved competitive position.”

The plan will provide the company with significant relief from the legacy liabilities it was required to assume when it spun off from Pharmacia (formerly known as Monsanto) in 1997. These legacy liabilities include retiree medical, life insurance and disability benefits for individuals who retired or became disabled prior to the Solutia spinoff. Also included are environmental remediation costs related to activities of the chemicals business of Pharmacia that occurred prior to the spinoff and toxic tort litigation costs relating to chemical exposure associated with the activities of Pharmacia that occurred prior to the spinoff.

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