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TubeTech to Close Its Plant in East Palestine

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EAST PALESTINE, Ohio – Nearly 50 employees will be laid off in the next couple months from TubeTech Inc. as the welded steel tube manufacturer shuts down its operations here.

The plant at 900 E. Taggart St. is in the process of being acquired by Middletown Tube Works, a subsidiary of Phillips Tube Group, based in Middletown. “A set of circumstances for the opportunity came along, and the decision was made by the shareholders to opt for that decision,” says Steve Oliphant, CEO of TubeTech.

Founded by Oliphant 29 years ago, TubeTech has customers across the country and in Mexico. The company manufactures products for the automotive, gas appliances, tubing fabricators, lawn and garden and other industries.

Phillips Tube Group welds steel tube and has plants in Middletown and Shelby, Ohio and Pell City, Ala. TubeTech’s business will merge with Phillips Tube Group’s existing facilities.

Oliphant declined to provide terms of the acquisition. He said he had hoped Phillips Tube Group would continue operations at the facility here but found out in June that the building would be closing.

“We’re closing the plant and that’s not good in any day of age,” he says.

The employee layoffs and closing date will happen sometime between the later part of August and mid-September, Oliphant says.

The building in East Palestine will go on sale in the coming months.

“It’s an 80,000-square foot facility that would be a benefit for anyone in the manufacturing business,” Oliphant says.

Oliphant along with a few other employees will be assisting Phillips Tube Group with marketing plans. He says it is not determined yet whether this will be full-time or temporary work.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.