ALLENDALE — A West Michigan injection molder that was acquired more than two years ago has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, citing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic after investing in operational improvements.
Antara Systems LLC, an Allendale-based company that does business as Jimdi Plastics Inc. and molds components and assemblies for agriculture, automotive, office furniture and consumer products markets, filed for Chapter 11 in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Michigan under Subchapter V of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.
The company lists $4.3 million in liabilities, which includes nearly $1.2 million in non-priority unsecured claims. Jimdi claimed $2.1 million in assets, including $304,150 in equipment and $806,708 in accounts receivable.
Jimdi Plastics was acquired in 2018 for $2.2 million by Antara Systems, which is owned and managed by Reed Lawrie. Jimdi Plastics is located at 5375 Edgeway Drive in Allendale and employs 54 people. Under the new ownership, Jimdi Plastics made investments in equipment and process improvements starting in 2019.
The company said in court filings that it spent $480,000 in parts and repairs for equipment that was in need of significant upgrades. The company also invested heavily in education for its employees to acquire the skills to take on new clients while hiring professionals with experience specifically in the automotive industry.
As a result of the investments, Jimdi ended 2019 with a $795,000 loss after bringing in $7.9 million in gross sales. The company said the losses stemmed from its investments as well as underpricing issues.
The company claimed that the COVID-19 pandemic cut revenue by 70 percent and forced a temporary reduction in both staff — from 67 to 15 employees — and the number of days and shifts. Jimdi took out federal Paycheck Protection Program loans — an unsecured $480,980 loan and a $457,500 secured loan — in order to survive.
The company also hired Grand Rapids-based consultants Gantry Business Solutions to help revise pricing to profitable levels while ironing out other efficiency issues.
The company finished 2020 with $6.8 million in gross sales. So far in 2021, the company has generated $875,103 in sales, according to court filings.
The balance on Jimdi’s PPP loans is $480,980, but an application for forgiveness is pending.
In 2018, the company took out U.S. Small Business Administration loans with TCF Bank for working capital. These loans were in the amounts of $350,000 and $2.4 million.
Jimdi Plastics has claims of $2.2 million and $314,645 from TCF Bank, $1.7 million of which is secured by collateral.
Creditors with some of the largest unsecured claims include Clarkston-based Chase Plastic Services Inc. ($145,381); Lodi, Ohio-based Buckeye Polymers Inc. ($134,029), Chicago-based Nexeo Solutions LLC ($127,604); Zeeland-based Rowland Mold & Machine Inc. ($113,159); and Atlanta-based AMCO Plastic Materials Inc. ($76,345).
Other unsecured creditors include Kalamazoo-based Mall City Containers Inc. ($63,125), Vortec Tooling Solutions Inc. of Zeeland ($55,724.41), Priority Health ($20,705), and Jenison-based Advantage Industries Inc. ($12,800).
Todd Almassian, partner at Grand Rapids-based Keller & Almassian PLC, is representing Jimdi, bringing his experience in guiding other businesses through the fairly new Subchapter V process.
This designation of Chapter 11 bankruptcy is reserved for small businesses with less than $7.5 million in debt, and offers a streamlined process by accelerating the timeline and reducing costs.
Almassian could not be reached for comment.