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INDUSTRY NOTES

Datatron Files for Reorganization

May 31, 1985

Blaming two uncooperative creditors, Datatron Inc., a Tustin computer equipment maker, has filed for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.

The filing comes just four months after Datatron's principal subsidiary, Weybern Corp., a computer distributor, filed for liquidation under Chapter 7 of the same code.

In the latest filing, Datatron, which has not turned a profit since 1980, listed assets of $1.6 million and debts totaling $3.6 million as of April 30.

Datatron has been struggling for years trying to find a way to turn a profit in the computer business. Because its own computer manufacturing operations were faltering, Datatron bought Weybern in mid-1983 as an entry into a potentially more profitable segment of the computer business. However, while Weybern accounted for nearly 85% of the company's sales in 1984, the company did not turn a profit.

In a prepared statement this week, Datatron said that while it believes its recent cost-cutting moves and new product development would allow it to reverse its fortunes, at least two of its 139 creditors would not accept a proposed informal restructuring of its debts. Names of the two companies were not revealed.

Fluor Technology Inc., a subsidiary of Irvine-based Fluor Corp., said Thursday it has signed an agreement to design a pilot plant for Bio-Foods Inc., a new food technology company setting up operations in Santa Ana. Bio-Foods is developing a tissue-culturing process in which plant cells reproduce without soil, water or fertilizer. The co-inventors of the process, Dr. Clair Folsome and Franklin Andrews, work in Hawaii, but the company plans to open its pilot plant in Orange County, according to Anne Andrews, corporate secretary. Andrews said Bio-Foods is raising venture capital and arranging research agreements. Fluor did not disclose the value of the contract.

Trimedyne Inc. of Santa Ana said it has entered a $3-million joint venture and equity investment agreement with Nyegaard A. S. of Norway to test and market Trimedyne's fiber-optic and laser catheters in Europe and the Middle East. Nyegaard, a large manufacturer of cardiovascular and radiological products, will provide up to $750,000 to the joint venture company, to be named Nytech Ltd. The agreement also calls for Nytech to purchase Trimedyne products worth approximately $1.5 million.

Bower Industries Inc., a Costa Mesa insulation contracting and supply firm, said it plans to sell a money-losing subsidiary to B. G. Development Corp. of Houston for $525,000 in cash.

The subsidiary, Houston-based Reliance Chemicals Corp. lost $188,000 last year on revenues of approximately $164,000, according to a spokesman for Bowers. Reliance manufactures bacteria cultures for use in sewage treatment cleanup. Similarly, B. G. Development is involved in waste disposal and treatment.

In an unrelated action, Bowers Industries and Mountain States Insulation and Supply Co. have agreed to call off a deal in which Bowers had agreed to buy the Utah supply company.

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