BioProcess Algae, a Rhode Island-based company partly owned by Clarcor, has signed an agreement to supply microalgal oils to a Swiss company that will refine them to make nutraceutical Omega-3 oils. Clarcor has invested more than $1.8 million for a 15 percent stake in BioProcess Algae.
Clarcor Executive Chairman Norm Johnson this week sold more than 42,000 shares of the filtration and packaging company of which he was CEO until late last year. The moves, which trimmed Johnson's stake by a third, grossed Johnson more than $2.1 million. Shares of Clarcor (Ticker: CLC) are down slightly so far in 2012.
Clarcor has refinanced its $250 million credit line, going with a smaller facility while keeping the option to add debt capacity. The Franklin-based company's new line, which is being managed by Bank of America, is for up to $150 million and will last Clarcor (Ticker: CLC) until 2017.
BioProcess Algae, a joint venture that includes Franklin-based Clarcor, said it and its partner Green Plains Renewable Energy will soon begin to build a bioreactor that will produce dried algae to be used in various end products. Clarcor owns 15 percent of the venture.
"We continue to work with potential strategic customers including major food, animal feed, energy and pharmaceutical companies around the world," continued Burns. "Often times, this is the first access they have had to larger quantities of wholesale algae. Our goal is to produce algae in a cost effective manner that can be used as the customer sees fit."
Clarcor Chairman Norm Johnson, who late last year stepped down as CEO of the manufacturer, cashed in another $2.8 million of his stock holdings last Friday and this past Monday. In the past two weeks, the 63-year-old Johnson has sold $5.3 million worth of stock. He and his wife still own about $12 million worth.
Fresh from reporting record numbers for fiscal 2011 and forecasting even better performance this year, executives at Clarcor say they plan to spend at least $45 million on plant expansions in the coming 12 months — a number that would double their investments of the past few years.
In their annual report filed last week, officials said "plant asset additions in fiscal year are estimated to be between $45 and $55 million." That number includes land, buildings, furniture and production equipment as well as computers and communications tools. Clarcor spent about $24 million in each of the past two fiscal years and almost $22 million in 2009 on property, plant and equipment. (Search here for "24,171".)
Clarcor execs also say they are looking to rework their $250 million revolving credit facility, which will expire at the end of the year. As of Dec. 31, the company had only $16 million of the line accounted for.
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