Taylor: Titan deal not final

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 1, 1999

Titan International’s acquisition by Syracuse, N.Y.-based Carlisle Companies probably will not be final until late November or December, Titan CEO Morry Taylor said Wednesday.

On Aug. 4, Carlisle announced that it had signed a letter of intent to acquire Titan for $600 million.

But Taylor pointed out that there is still a lot of work left to be done before the deal is final.

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&uot;You have to get shareholder approval first, plus there’s tons and tons of paperwork that have to be done,&uot;&160;said Taylor, who will become chairman of Carlisle’s wheel and tire division after the sale is final.

And both parties have to visit the other’s facilities, review their records and visit with management and employees, a process they’ve already started.

That is what Carlisle officials were doing in Natchez last week, said Taylor – looking Titan’s plant over prior to the purchase.

&uot;And we’ve been through their plants as well,&uot; Taylor said.

One group watching the deal is United Steelworkers of America Local 303L, whose members have been on strike from Titan’s Natchez plant for almost one year now.

When the purchase is finalized, Carlisle will inherit the labor dispute.

Instead of holding more contract negotiations – which Titan and Steelworkers have held several times in the last year – Local 303L will simply wait to see how the purchase progresses, said local President Leo &uot;T-Bone&uot;&160;Bradley.

Meanwhile, business as usual continues at the Natchez plant, Taylor said.

He estimated that &uot;somewhere under 200,000 pounds&uot;&160;of tires are being produced each day by the plant and that it now employs almost 300 people.

Carlisle officials could not be reached for comment Wednesday.