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Dee DePass

Reporter | Manufacturing
phone: 612-673-7725
Dee DePass covers the manufacturing industry for the Star Tribune with an eye toward new products and technology, job growth and distribution developments in Minnesota.
Recent content from Dee DePass
Select Comfort stock jumps as company beats Q1 expectations

Select Comfort stock jumps as company beats Q1 expectations

Company upholds its forecast for full year 2016 despite signaling industry headwinds.
Regis Corp. stock down 15 percent after reporting third-quarter loss

Regis Corp. stock down 15 percent after reporting third-quarter loss

The results missed analysts' expectations, and the stock took a hit.

Cliffs turns a profit and announces Northshore Mining will reopen this quarter

Cliffs said it will start in June, and United Taconite will begin later this year.

Proto Labs sees bump in sales but misses Wall Street expectations

Maple Plain contract manufacturer saw a slowdown in industrial production orders.
Softer electronics sales hurt 3M results

Softer electronics sales hurt 3M results

Three of 3M's five units saw organic sales gains. The electronics and energy unit was hurt by a big drop in consumer electronics sales.
Tennant's sales and profits slip slightly in first quarter

Tennant's sales and profits slip slightly in first quarter

The company's newer products made up more than 35 percent of sales.
Rural Minnesota factories work overtime to fill jobs

Rural Minnesota factories work overtime to fill jobs

Businesses are paying for housing, education even buying other companies to find workers.
Profits for Polaris plunge after sales drop and recall costs rise

Profits for Polaris plunge after sales drop and recall costs rise

Executives stuck to their forecast of sales and profits under pressure throughout 2016.

Taylor Corp. to buy Staples printing facilities

The purchase means Taylor Corp. is acquiring the assets of one of its largest customers.

Graco misses analyst expectations for first quarter

Sales in Europe and Asia were strong but not enough to offset U.S. declines.
Valspar CEO could see $38 million payday from sale to Sherwin-Williams

Valspar CEO could see $38 million payday from sale to Sherwin-Williams

Change of control agreements apply to top executives who leave the combined company within two years.
Waconia sod farmer creates sandals so wearers can stomp messages in sand

Waconia sod farmer creates sandals so wearers can stomp messages in sand

A Waconia sod farmer has teamed with an industrial manufacturing pro to create Sand Traxx sandals with interchangeable letters.
Valspar filing includes severance details related to Sherwin-Williams merger

Valspar filing includes severance details related to Sherwin-Williams merger

Valspar workers will receive between 12 and 36 weeks of pay if laid off after Sherwin Williams' $11.3 billion purchase is completed.
Dayton issues new deadline and ultimatum to Essar Steel Minnesota

Dayton issues new deadline and ultimatum to Essar Steel Minnesota

Steel company has two months to repay debts or leases will be terminated.

Fastenal first-quarter profits drop, miss Wall Street expectations

The Winona-based company said it will be slowing hiring until conditions improve.
Apogee Enterprises almost hits $1 billion mark in sales

Apogee Enterprises almost hits $1 billion mark in sales

The Bloomington glass company has forecasted passing that mark in 2016.
Essar Steel misses another deadline to pay Minnesota back

Essar Steel misses another deadline to pay Minnesota back

This time, the steel company fails to pay Minnesota $10 million it promised in December.

Vadnais Heights-based H.B. Fuller to buy Australian adhesives company

Deal will fortify Asia Pacific operations, company says.
Minnesota manufacturing barely grows in March

Minnesota manufacturing barely grows in March

Minnesota manufacturers barely grew in March, and the pace of growth slowed so much that the state is performing worse than half of its regional…
Ex-auto mogul Denny Hecker to be released from prison 1 year early

Ex-auto mogul Denny Hecker to be released from prison 1 year early

The Federal Bureau of Prisons said Denny Hecker, incarcerated since 2010 for defrauding auto lenders and the U.S bankruptcy court, will be released in 2018 instead of 2019 without specifying why.
3M reaffirms 2016 earnings guidance, sets 5-year goals

3M reaffirms 2016 earnings guidance, sets 5-year goals

Stock falls as investors look for more but company expresses confidence.

H.B. Fuller in Vadnais Heights exceeds 1Q earnings expectations

Strong sales and lower raw material costs boosted the adhesives maker.
Cliffs CEO says United Taconite should reopen this year

Cliffs CEO says United Taconite should reopen this year

United Taconite plant and mine in Forbes and Eveleth will reopen later this year.

Acme Brick Co. to close Springfield and Edina brick facilities for good this year

Officials say that market conditions for brick have failed to recover.
Valspar's stock bolts on news that it will be bought by Sherwin-Williams

Valspar's stock bolts on news that it will be bought by Sherwin-Williams

Shares rose nearly $20 on the news Sherwin-Williams will buy the firm, but long-term effects here aren't clear.
Minnesota Job Creation Fund incentives program doubled rewards in 2015

Minnesota Job Creation Fund incentives program doubled rewards in 2015

Determined to keep employers expanding in Minnesota, not elsewhere, the state has promised more than $25 million to companies over the past two years.
New Starkey hearing aid will help people not to miss a beat

New Starkey hearing aid will help people not to miss a beat

A new Starkey hearing aid called the Muse is designed to bring full music sound to the ears of baby boomers and others.
Gymnastics continue in Starkey wrongful termination lawsuits

Gymnastics continue in Starkey wrongful termination lawsuits

The federal court approved a move after fired executive Jerry Ruzicka dropped an ESOP claim against the company.
Cliffs will restart North Shore plant, recall 540 workers

Cliffs will restart North Shore plant, recall 540 workers

Cliffs will restart one of its taconite plants and recall 540 workers laid off in January.
Polaris launches new motorcycles, partnerships with Jack Daniel's, Red Wing Shoes

Polaris launches new motorcycles, partnerships with Jack Daniel's, Red Wing Shoes

Motorcycle co-branding with Jack Daniel's whiskey and Red Wing Shoes is a first for Medina-based Polaris.
3M Co., Nobel Prize organization form partnership

3M Co., Nobel Prize organization form partnership

They will co-sponsor educational and science events across the globe.
3M Co. opens new $150M R&D lab today on its Maplewood campus

3M Co. opens new $150M R&D lab today on its Maplewood campus

The new space, with an open design and a lot of natural light, has longtime scientists for the Maplewood company looking forward to moving.

Imation posts 4Q loss of $10 million

The much smaller company now concentrates or cloud-based storage and data security companies.

Stratasys shares rise sharply after company signals fewer losses next year

The company's fourth-quarter loss widened and it undertook cost-saving steps.

Donaldson Co. misses second-quarter estimates and downgrades full 2016 outlook

Industrial downturn and currency woes are factors.
Midwest manufacturing sector still lags but improving

Midwest manufacturing sector still lags but improving

Minnesota manufacturers showed growth in February.

Patterson's third quarter beats analysts' estimates with help from new acquisition

Its animal care division doubled its sales, leading to $1.4B in total sales.
3-D printer Stratasys struts its stuff during New York's Fashion Week

3-D printer Stratasys struts its stuff during New York's Fashion Week

Two nature-inspired dresses that took 3 countries and 400 hours each to make debuted this week on N.Y. runway

Tennant's profit falls 25 percent in fourth quarter

Negative foreign currency translations hit hard, claiming 5 percent of 4Q and annual sales.
Ecolab profit drops 38 percent on Venezuelan writeoff

Ecolab profit drops 38 percent on Venezuelan writeoff

Chemical products firm hit by Venezuelan crisis.
Messy split at Starkey Hearing is making industry waves

Messy split at Starkey Hearing is making industry waves

A few days before Christmas, 1,400 employees of Starkey Hearing Technologies gathered on the company’s Eden Prairie campus for a pep talk. It had been…
Toro profit rises sharply, driven by landscape and construction equipment

Toro profit rises sharply, driven by landscape and construction equipment

The company forecast 4 percent sales growth for the full fiscal year.
Valspar sees a big drop in profit for first quarter

Valspar sees a big drop in profit for first quarter

Company takes hit in sales at Lowe's and is struggling with effects of strong U.S. dollar.
Obituary: Joseph "Joey" BigBear, cook and community volunteer

Obituary: Joseph "Joey" BigBear, cook and community volunteer

For decades, Joey BigBear lifted spirits with his smiles, kind deeds and the chili, fry bread and grilled fare he showered on Minneapolis’ homeless, recovering…

Imation could be delisted from New York Stock Exchange

With its stock trading at just 65 cents a share, Imation Corp. was notified by the New York Stock Exchange that it no longer complies with standards required to have its stock listed on the exchange, Imation officials announced Monday.

Fourth-quarter sales and profit for Proto Labs soar

CEO Vicki Holt called it a strong end to a good year for the Maple Plain injection molding firm.
Pentair's fourth-quarter sales and profits slide but beat analysts' expectations

Pentair's fourth-quarter sales and profits slide but beat analysts' expectations

The company warned of a big impairment charge for its Valves and Controls unit.

3M will keep and invest in health information systems unit

The company had said a sale was possible, but has decided to expand the business instead.
State agency touts economic benefits of recycling

State agency touts economic benefits of recycling

60,000 Minnesotans work in jobs shaped by recycling, MPCA reports
U.S., Midwest manufacturers report slight improvement while still in tightening mode

U.S., Midwest manufacturers report slight improvement while still in tightening mode

State factories lead region, but still face pressures.

Hecker moved from Colorado to Illinois for his ninth prison in 5 years

The federal Bureau of Prisons declined to say why he was moved.

Arctic Cat, Polaris each file patent infringement lawsuits

Minnesota's two premier off-road vehicle makers are battling in court once again.
Inventor sues 3M over Post-it notes

Inventor sues 3M over Post-it notes

It's his second lawsuit against the company.
Taconite maker Cliffs Natural Resources lost $58 million in the fourth quarter

Taconite maker Cliffs Natural Resources lost $58 million in the fourth quarter

Company lost about $30 million from idling iron ore plants in Minnesota and Michigan amid industry restructuring.
3M's profit, sales dip at end of 2015 but still beat Wall Street expectations

3M's profit, sales dip at end of 2015 but still beat Wall Street expectations

Stock spikes despite impact of strong dollar.
Fired assistant sues Starkey; company accuses her of theft

Fired assistant sues Starkey; company accuses her of theft

A fired executive assistant sued Starkey Laboratories late Wednesday for allegedly breaching an employment contract, while the company responded with claims that she stole from a secret fund.

3M sells another small unit, this time a pressurized foam adhesives business

Latest deal involves a foam adhesives business.
Accusations of theft, wrongdoing traded by Starkey, fired president

Accusations of theft, wrongdoing traded by Starkey, fired president

Starkey Laboratories' ousted president on Friday sued the company, while the firm's attorney said the former official had stolen millions of dollars.

Fastenal profit falls amid slower energy business, Brazil venture closure

Fastenal Co.’s fourth-quarter profit fell 5.5 percent and came in just below Wall Street expectations, dented by lower demand from oil and gas customers and…

H.B. Fuller profit doubles, executives see gains in 2016

The strong end to 2015 is expected to carry into '16.
Troubled Essar Steel Minnesota lays off workers on the Iron Range

Troubled Essar Steel Minnesota lays off workers on the Iron Range

Layoffs were announced amid financial struggles.

Magnetation taconite plant closure brings total Range layoffs to 2,000

Magnetation's Bovey plant is its second to go idle since April.
Venezuela's currency devaluation prompts Ecolab to take fourth-quarter charge

Venezuela's currency devaluation prompts Ecolab to take fourth-quarter charge

That is on top of the $155 million charge it took against third-quarter earnings for the very same reason.

Roseville-based Hawkins Inc. buys Stauber Performance Ingredients for $157 million

CEO calls $157M deal "transformational" for Roseville chemical firm.

Minnesota and other Midwest manufacturers take it on the chin in December

Strong dollar, other factors thump Minnesota, Midwest manufacturers.
Essar accepts state's final offer on repayment terms of $66M

Essar accepts state's final offer on repayment terms of $66M

Essar must begin payments in February and must pay at least $10 million to the state by March 31. The remaining $56 million of the loan will then be repaid in 16 quarterly installments beginning in 2017.
Starkey Hearing says company is crime victim, but offers few details

Starkey Hearing says company is crime victim, but offers few details

Starkey Hearing Technologies officials say the company is not under federal investigation for criminal wrongdoing but is instead a victim of a possible crime.
3M Co. lowers outlook for 2015, citing slowing global economy

3M Co. lowers outlook for 2015, citing slowing global economy

Company says that 2016 sales should grow 1 to 3 percent.

Polaris Industries recalls 6,930 snowmobiles and off-road vehicles

Steering issues, fires and oil leaks were a concern in its second recall of 2015.
Essar still owes Iron Range contractors millions

Essar still owes Iron Range contractors millions

More than a half-dozen Minnesota vendors still owed more than $18M

Donaldson Co. hires former Imation CFO Scott Robinson

Donaldson Co. hired Imation's former CFO as its own chief financial officer.Scott Robinson, 49, will start in his new position Tuesday, the company said.The Bloomington-based…
Essar Steel makes payments to vendors, averting showdown with Dayton

Essar Steel makes payments to vendors, averting showdown with Dayton

The company is now current on $20 million in payments to state vendors.
Boss acquisition boosts Toro Co. fourth-quarter earnings

Boss acquisition boosts Toro Co. fourth-quarter earnings

Snowplow acquisition gives Bloomington firm big earnings jump
Dayton hopes to announce Thursday if he'll order Essar Steel to repay state

Dayton hopes to announce Thursday if he'll order Essar Steel to repay state

Gov. Mark Dayton hopes to announce Thursday whether he will order Essar Steel Minnesota to pay back $66 million in state incentives toward a $1.9…
Manufacturing conditions in Midwest, including Minnesota, worst in three years

Manufacturing conditions in Midwest, including Minnesota, worst in three years

Closely watched survey of Midwest firms shows strong dollar, sagging energy sector were factors
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