Tennessee Aluminum Company Buys Gramercy Alumina

GRAMERCY, La. (AP) -- A Tennessee company has acquired full ownership of the Gramercy Alumina plant and says production will be at full capacity by the end of the year.

Noranda Aluminum Holding Co. of Franklin, Tenn., announced that it acquired the 50 percent of the plant owned by Century Aluminum Co., along with 49 percent of a bauxite mine in Jamaica that supplies raw material.

The plant extracts alumina from bauxite.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed by the privately held company.

Gramercy Alumina supplies almost all of the alumina that used by Noranda's aluminum smelter in New Madrid, Mo.

"Along with the senior management of this facility, we believe this to be our best shot at growth and sustainability," plant spokesman Curt Fordham said Wednesday.

The company's aluminum output supplies three rolling mills owned by subsidiary Noranda USA, which produce aluminum products.

About 10 percent of the plant's work force has been laid off in recent months, but some employees have been recalled to their jobs. The plant's work force now stands at about 470 employees, Fordham said.

The Noranda-Century partnership took control of the plant from Kaiser Aluminum in 2004.

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