Plymouth lubrication firm Interlube bought by global giant Timken
PLYMOUTH lubrication firm Interlube Systems Ltd is predicting investment in its city factory after being bought by multi-billion-dollar global manufacturer The Timken Company for an undisclosed fee.
Interlube employs 90 people at its Parkway Industrial Estate plant and had a turnover of about £8.7million in 2012.
But that is small fry compared to the huge US-centred Timken which last year had sales of five billion dollars and employs about 20,000 people in 30 countries including Australia, India, China, and across Europe including Russia.
Interlube makes and markets automated lubrication delivery systems and related components for use in commercial vehicles, construction, mining and heavy and general industries.
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Formed from a management buyout from Invensys in 2000, Interlube is now considered a world leader in its field with a USA operation in Dayton, Ohio, and a joint venture in Zhuhai, China.
Its purchase by Timken also includes MSP Distributors Ltd, based in Cheltenham, which Interlube acquired in 2007.
Interlube managing director Mike Cusack, part of the team that bought the firm in a £2.35million deal 13 years ago, said: "Interlube are delighted to be joining The Timken group. Their global reach will allow Interlube to continue expanding its markets, and should provide enhanced investment in the Plymouth facility."
Industrial technology giant Timken is headquartered in Ohio, USA, where it engineers, manufactures and markets mechanical components and high-performance steel.
Michael J. Connors, vice president of distribution for Timken, said: "We're pleased to have Interlube join the Timken team.
"The management team brings a wealth of experience and established customer relationships, and their automated lubrication delivery systems certainly complement the Timken portfolio of power transmission products."
As part of its growth strategy, Timken has been steadily adding to its product portfolio and sees Interlube as highly compatible to its core product lines and recent acquisitions.
"Their expertise and quality product line, coupled with our global reach and market access, will allow us to grow market share for Interlube products, as well as expose new market space for existing Timken applications," Mr Connors said.
During the deal, Interlube was advised by Gary Partridge, of accountancy giant PwC, and Richard Cobb, of Michelmores Solicitors, in Exeter.
Mr Partridge said: "We're delighted with the outcome, Timken is the perfect strategic buyer for Interlube."
Michelmores partner Richard Cobb said: "It is always rewarding to help an MBO (management buyout) team achieve the exit they have worked towards for many years.
"As a leading well-known manufacturer in the South West, Interlube has now got even greater global aspirations as part of the Timken group, and this must bode well for the UK operation and its staff."
Last year, Mr Cusack, told The Herald that Interlube was a major exporter highlighting northern Europe and Scandinavia, and the USA, as "strong" markets.
He said last year that the join venture in China could soon be followed by similar ventures in India and South Africa, where negotiations were taking place.
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