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Graco buys LSR equipment maker Fluid Automation

By: Bill Bregar

November 27, 2012

MINNEAPOLIS (Nov. 27, 12:45 p.m. ET) — Graco Inc., a Minneapolis-based maker of fluid handling equipment, has purchased Fluid Automation Inc., which makes pumping and metering systems for liquid silicone rubber.

Fluid Automation, based in Wixom, Mich., was founded in 1974 by Lance Daby, who developed the first “direct-from-the-drum” pumping system for RTV rubber materials.

In LSR molding the liquid gets pumped into a heated mold, where it is cured. LSR has grown as a process for medical molding.

Graco announced the acquisition on Nov. 27. Terms were not disclosed.

“Fluid Automation is recognized and well respected for its product line and application experience,” said Matt Kahle, marketing manager of Graco’s Applied Fluid Technologies Division. “Graco intends to make substantial product, channel and manufacturing investments in this business, and to drive leadership in a growing industry.”

Graco is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

Through the first nine months of 2012, ended Sept. 28, Graco reported sales of $758.8 million, a 12 percent increase from $679.7 million in the year-before period. The 2012 sales include Graco’s purchase Illinois Tool Works Inc.’s powder and liquid finishing business.