MELTING POT This market is eternal

Nov 08, 2007 | 08:08 PM |

Of all the exhibits at last month's annual meeting of the International Titanium Association in Orlando, Fla., it's probably safe to say that none drew more attention than a small, unpretentious display off the beaten path that was noteworthy in its own way a 115-pound coffin.

This was the work of George J. Esseff Sr. a longtime distribution executive who now has his own firm, Titanium Products Design, and heads the nonprofit Esseff Foundation in Westlake Village, Calif. Esseff is no newcomer to the titanium industry. In 1955, he founded Supra Alloys Inc., a Camarillo, Calif., distributor that today is a unit of Lawrence Holdings Inc. and is run by his son, George Jr., president. Esseff senior maintained in Orlando that the casket can be competitive with more conventional materials such as bronze, copper or stainless steel. In fact, he said, a titanium casket, made of commercially pure Grade 2 material, would cost an estimated $10,000 to $20,000 versus as much as $28,000 for a good bronze casket. Moreover, he said, it weighs considerably less than 280 pounds in the steel version, yet has been tested to hold up to 600 pounds. While Esseff emphasized that titanium is also....





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