Wolverine Tube and Ratcliffs Severn Ltd. announced a strategic alliance merging the assets of Wolverine's Fergus, Ontario, copper and copper alloy production facility with the assets of Ratcliffs' Toronto-based light gauge copper and brass strip manufacturing operations. The new venture will be named Wolverine Ratcliffs Inc.
Wolverine will own 74.5% of the company and Ratcliffs will 25.5%. An integrated team of operations, engineering, sales and marketing executives from both companies will manage the new firm.
In other news, Wolverine Tube reported a second-quarter net income decrease of $8.6 million, or 63 cents per diluted share, compared with 1998's second-quarter figure of $11.7 million, or 81 cents per diluted share. Net sales were $164.3 million, a decline from 1998's $169.6 million attributed to lower average copper prices.