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Riviera Tool Notes Stronger Sales,
Picks Up Auto Contracts

Monday, April 22, 2002
Riviera Tool Co., Grand Rapids, MI, reported net sales of $3.5 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2002, an increase of almost 45 percent over the same period last year. Officials of the company, a designer and manufacturer of stamping die systems, attribute higher sales to increased shipments and completed die-system contracts. In the same quarter, the company narrowed its net loss to $687,990 as compared to a net loss of $1.9 million in the same period last year. Also, the company announced $21 million in purchase orders and letters of intent related to new-model production by Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Nissan Motors. These represent Riviera’s largest contract to date and result from the company’s recent investment in technology and expanded capabilities. “While the past 18 months have been extremely difficult for our industry, we have finally begun to turn the corner,” said Riviera CEO Kenneth K. Rieth. “We are encouraged to see automakers and their Tier One suppliers begin to release contracts for new programs, and expect a progressive increase in the flow of new orders for the remainder of this calendar year.”

Ken Iverson, Nucor Founder, Dies

Monday, April 22, 2002
F. Kenneth Iverson, who as president of Vulcraft in the 1960s, led the formation of minimill power Nucor Corp., has died. He was 76. Iverson and a handful of former Vulcraft officials oversaw Nucor as it entered the steelmaking arena in 1969 with a new plant in Darlington, SC. Under his leadership, Nucor created a joint venture, Nucor-Yamato, with a Japanese steelmaker in the mid-1980s. Also in that era, he championed adoption of thin-slab casting, allowing creation of steel sheet by casting steel in 2-in. slabs, much thinner than what was cast at the time. A mill was built in Crawfordsville, IN, to capitalize on the technology. Under his direction, Nucor would lead the minimill boom, where steel was produced in smaller factories using recycled scrap as opposed to integrated steelmaking, which requires huge blast-furnace facilities. In tonnage produced, Nucor now is the largest steelmaker in the United States. Iverson instilled key values at Nucor that have been widely imitated. These include a lean corporate staff, lack of executive perks, decentralized leadership and construction of facilities in rural areas.

Houghton Wins Chemical-Management Contract with Ford Stamping Plant

Friday, April 19, 2002
Houghton International, Valley Forge, PA, has sold its Fluidcare chemical-management program to the Ford stamping plant in Maumee, OH, as well as to the Ford engine plant in Romeo, MI. Houghton Fluidcare will supply the plants with all fluids and chemicals used to make parts and treat water and wastewater. In addition, it will establish a baseline cost analysis for the plants. The program includes monitoring, control, support, inventory control and waste minimization. For more information about Fluidcare programs, link over to


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