Tramontina: Koenig & Vits Receivership Having No Impact On Flow Of Goods

The recently reported court decision to place Koenig & Vits into receivership and to sell the former Mirro plant and rolling mill in Manitowoc, WI is having no material impact on Tramontina’s flow of goods and it is, “business as usual,” Antonio Galafassi, president of Tramontina told HOMEWORLD BUSINESS®, in an exclusive interview.
Tramontina has leased manufacturing space at the facility since 2006 and at one point had used Koenig & Vits to supply aluminum for its non-stick aluminum cookware manufacturing operations there.
“This isn’t affecting Tramontina at all,” Galafassi, said. “Koenig & Vits was a subcontractor, and there are plenty of other suppliers of aluminum in the United States. There was a convenience factor in having them supply us with aluminum, but we have not had any interruption in supply or production since we stopped working with them.”
In fact, Galafassi explained, Tramontina has been working with another aluminum supplier for more than a year. “We are not losing any momentum in terms of production and our lives continue as usual,” he said. “We are more excited than ever— we are getting more momentum for Made-in-the-U.S.A product and our production is up to full capacity.”
According to a recent report in the Manitowoc Herald Times Reporter, the Manitowoc County Circuit Court appointed a receiver to sell the aluminum rolling mill and 100 acres on Mirro Drive, in Manitowoc. Documents filed with the court claim that local real estate developer, Tim Martinez who purchased the facility in 2003, owes millions to various creditors including $6.7 million to Community Bank & Trust in Sheboygan from various loans.
Tramontina is among the 10 companies that have sued Koenig & Vits, alleging it failed to return more than 200,000 pounds of metal Martinez’s company had received for processing.
Other vendors have filed suits in the past year against Koenig & Vits seeking nearly $900,000 in damages for services rendered but not paid for, or for metal that had gone missing. 

According to Galafassi, Tramontina is well insulated from the impact of any potential sale with a lease that is less than halfway through its 10-year term. 
“Tramontina will not have any stop or drop in production,” Galafassi said. “Any disruption creates some extra work, but we developed a very good supplier partnership beyond K&V, and everything is very stable with Tramontina operations. K&V’s status does not affect Tramontina at all.”

Tramontina has been renting at the Mirro Drive manufacturing complex for $720,000 per year on a 10-year lease that began in 2006, according to the Herald Times report.