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Film extrusion: Macchi denies takeover rumors

It is rare that a privately owned company feels the need to publically deny takeover rumors, but then blown- and cast-film extruder manufacturer Macchi (Venegono, Italy) has had to weather tougher issues during the past 24 months than the rumor mill. The company's leader and most public face, Alessandro Macchi, was shot dead in a domestic dispute in 2008, just as the market started to turn sour, and since then the company has been forced to compete in a tougher arena without its star player.

Following his son's death, Luigi Macchi, the company's founder and chairman, and father of Alessandro Macchi, again took an active role in the company's daily operations, and says that though he understands that a down market creates a hyper-competitive environment, he does not pardon the persistent rumor mongering. In addition, he says the company exited 2009 without resorting to layoffs or reductions in employees' paid hours, and that the company's present logbook of confirmed orders is good.

Mergers and acquisitions in the film extrusion machinery market, which is dominated by privately owned firms, have been relatively rare. A notable exception occurred last summer when Reifenhäuser announced its acquisition of the film extrusion machinery business of Kiefel. MPW understands from a number of sources that the downmarket of late 2008 and 2009, coupled with the euro's climb in value compared to the U.S. dollar, has led some European machine makers to engage in talks to acquire all or part of North American rivals, but so far these discussions have not amounted to any concrete decisions. [email protected]

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