Metex Manufacturing Corp., formerly known as Kentile Floors Inc., filed for bankruptcy protection for the second time since 1992 to cope with asbestos product- liability claims.
The company, which manages two industrial facilities in New Jersey, listed assets and debt of more than $100 million each in Chapter 11 documents filed today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan. Metex faces about about 6,000 active asbestos claims tied to Kentile, according to court papers.
Planned insurance settlements, including a trust, “will provide the best and fairest opportunity for all asbestos personal injury claimants,” Anthony Miceli, president of Great Neck, New York-based Metex, said today in court papers.
Kentile traced its roots to the late 1800s, when it began manufacturing cork tile. Until the mid-1980s, Kentile used asbestos, a type of mineral which can cause lung disease when the fibers are inhaled, in some tiles. The company “experienced severe difficulties” when it could no longer use asbestos, according to court papers.
Kentile sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 1992 while facing about 20,000 asbestos claims. The company changed its name to Metex in 1998, according to court papers.
The case is In re Metex Mfg. Corp., 12-14554, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).
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