Volume 36, Issue 12, December 2001

GlobalUpdate

Pilk’s Bid for Egyptian Glass Co. Fails
Pilkington plc’s bid to purchase a majority stake in Cairo’s Egyptian Glass Co. fell through after only 1.4 percent of shareholders agreed to sell, the stock exchange reported. 

“The pricing committee decided … not to execute the transaction upon the request of the brokerage company representing the buyer,” a bourse statement said. “The total offered shared reached 21,333, that represents 1.4 percent of the company’s total shares, which will not fulfill the minimum required.”

Reportedly, Pilkington had wanted to buy 1.35 million shares of Egyptian Glass at a price of 105 Egyptian pounds ($25) per share, which would have represented 90 percent of the issued and paid-in capital. The offer would have been worth 142 million pounds ($33 million).

However, according to the bourse, Pilkington had the right to refrain from the deal if the number of shares offered for sale was insufficient to give it ownership of 78 percent of the issued capital.

Ashton Industrial Takes on Canadian Market
United Kingdom-based Ashton Industrial has recently secured its first Canadian order from Montreal’s Novatech Glass.
According to information from Ashton, Novatech purchased its automatic seaming production line, which it says is capable of seaming glass up to 88 by 36 inches in less than four seconds. Novatech also chose an X/DIA stand-alone cross-belt seaming machine. Steve Blundell, commercial manager with Ashton Industrial, said Novatech received the stand-alone machine in late September and the delivery and installation of the auto seaming line is scheduled for spring 2002.

Guardian Celebrates Five Years in Germany
On October 12 Guardian Industries celebrated its fifth anniversary at its Thalheim, Germany plant, complete with a performance by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. More than 400 guests participated in the celebration, which included a concert and reception. Guardian also hosted 120 local school children at the concert.

“We are extremely proud of our achievements in Germany,” said Lajos Sapi, managing director of Guardian’s Central and Eastern European operations. “We are fortunate to have a hard-working and dedicated workforce, as well as a government in Saxony-Anhalt that shares our vision of economic growth and stability. That support continues to be a major factor in our success.”

Asahi Plans to Boost European Production
Japan’s Asahi Glass Co. Ltd. has announced it plans to spend 7 billion yen to boost flat glass production by 30 percent at its Belgian plant. According to a news release, the plant’s combined capacity is expected to reach some 1 million tons a year.

In other news, Asahi has also announced it plans to take full management control of its Philippine glass pane joint venture, the Nikon Keizai Shimbun reported, but did not cite its source.

According to a news release, Asahi will spend some 2.3 billion yen to buy the outstanding 51-percent stake in the Republic-Asahi Glass Corp. from the local partners. 

Saint-Gobain Cristaleria pays Installment for Saint-Gobain Mexico 
Saint-Gobain Cristaleria SA has paid $15 million (USD) to the Mexican financial group Bital for its monetary stake in Saint-Gobain Glass Mexico SA de CV. 

In July of this year, Banco Internacional, the main subsidiary of Bital, announced it would sell its 20-percent stake in the Saint Gobain subsidiary for $32 million, but at the time did not disclose the buyer. According to Saint-Gobain Cristaleria, its $15 million payment is the second installment of the total amount due.

China Luoyang Builds Seventh Thin Glass Line
The city of Henan in China marks China Luoyang Glass Group’s seventh thin glass production line, which recently began operations. The facility has the capacity to produce 0.6-mm glass, and is the first thin glass production line developed by China. A company spokesperson says glass produced in the plant will be used in the automotive and electronics industries. 

“We Can’t Even Make Glass,” Affirms Taliban Supporter
A Pakistani English-language newspaper recently reported that suspected terrorist Osama bin Laden has nuclear and chemical weapons it plans to use against the United States if attacked. However, when the Taliban’s ambassador to Pakistan was asked about the threat of nuclear weapons, he replied, “We can’t even make glass, so how can we make nuclear weapons?”


USG

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