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Harrington buys high-purity pipe assets

By: Catherine Kavanaugh

May 13, 2014

Pipe distributor Harrington Industrial Plastics has acquired the assets of E&S Technologies to expand its line of high-purity products and its reach into the eastern United States.

Both companies are privately held and terms weren’t disclosed.

Founded in Chino, Calif., in 1959, Harrington handles pipe for corrosive and high-purity applications and claims to be the nation’s largest distributor of industrial plastic piping systems.

Chelmsford, Mass.-based E&S was a regional direct competitor in the high-purity market although there also was some overlap with industrial sales.

Harrington will integrate E&S’s inventory, offices and employees into its two-year-old division called Harrington Pure, which offers specialty tubing, piping, valves and fittings for the micro-electronics, solar, food, dairy and beverage markets.

Think products that have serial numbers, get double bagged and are bound for clean rooms, Harrington Marketing Manager Kevin Maple said in a telephone interview.

“They go to environments where a single speck of dust can cause problems,” Maple said.

The Harrington Pure division uses virgin polypropylene, copolymers and exotic plastics that are approved by the Federal Drug Administration to eliminate the potential for contamination while conveying liquids in laboratories and manufacturing facilities.

The purchase of E&S Technologies, which focused on the microelectronics and semiconductor industries, will enable Harrington Pure to go after those markets while developing the division with knowledgeable staff.

“We’re expanding the role of Harrington Pure and E&S Technologies was a direct fit for that,” Maple said. “Really we’re buying the business and the personnel. They have great people working there with lots of years of experience in those markets and that’s the biggest thing we wanted.”

All E&S employees will be retained, which adds 15-20 people to the Harrington staff, Maple added.

Harrington has been growing on the Eastern seaboard since 1997 and has facilities housing PVC, CPVC, PVDF, polypropylene, fiberglass and plastic-lined steel pipes and components.

E&S was an attractive acquisition target because of its presence in Chelmsford, Cohoes, N.Y.; Lafayette Hill, Pa. and Apex, N.C. The locations will serve as an anchor point to penetrate markets not currently serviced by Harrington Pure.

The acquisition also enhances Harrington’s product offering for the pharmaceutical and biotech markets.

In 2011, Harrington acquired competing pipe distributor ProTec Construction Services & Supply for an undisclosed price to fill a market hole it had in Texas.

Harrington is part of the utilities and industry division of Aliaxis SA, which is also privately held. The website of the Brussels-based maker and distributor of plastic fluid handling systems says its 2013 revenue was 2.5 billion euros ($3.3 billion) compared to 2.3 billion euros ($3 billion) in 2012.