Issue: Apr 2006


Excellent opportunity for an industry player in need of capacity



by John Larkin

Amcast Automotive, Inc. has retained Equity Partners, Inc. of Maryland (“EPI”) to seek an immediate sale (s) of its two low pressure permanent mold (“LPPM”) and Flowform aluminum automotive wheel casting plants in Gas City and Fremont, IN.

Currently operating in Chapter 11, Amcast Automotive is a highly regarded designer and manufacturer of wheels and has long standing relationships with GM, Daimler Chrysler, Tecstar and Subaru. The two plants have had combined sales of more than $120 million annually and have employed in excess of 500 workers. With capacity to produce up to 22 inch wheels, Amcast has provided small, medium and large aluminum wheels to over 30 passenger car and light truck programs. Combined, the plants can produce about 3 million wheels annually.

Each plant has LPPM casting machines, automated machining cells, heat treating, and painting operations. Amcast invested over $7 million to develop a proprietary flowform process at the Gas City plant. The process facilitates the use of cosmetically desired low profile tires, as featured on the Corvette and other highly visible GM models. Both plants are QS 9000 / ISO 9001 certified. GM represents 100% of sales in Gas City, and 30% in Fremont, and its contracts run only though this June.

Ken Mann, a partner at EPI, says that "These plants represent an excellent opportunity for an industry player in need of capacity and/or with the ability to rekindle the GM relationship. Or for a foreign producer looking for a US presence close to domestic manufacturers. In addition to wheels, the facilities could make other automotive parts, such as step up bumpers, steering knuckles and heavy truck wheels. They could also produce various parts for personal watercraft, all terrain vehicles, and numerous other industries."

Interim CEO for Amcast, Dick Lindenmuth adds that, “Amcast has been blessed with great employees and while we seek to maximize the financial return to our creditors, we are especially interested in solutions that would keep those folks gainfully employed.”

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