Acquisitive British pipe and profile molder Polypipe plc announced Nov. 26 it has expanded on the European continent by purchasing German plumbing and ducting manufacturer Gabo Systemtechnik GmbH of Bogen, Germany, for £6.05 million (US$10.2 million).
Thyssen Polymer GmbH of Essen, Germany — part of German industrial giant Thyssen AG—sold Gabo for a single cash payment. Gabo reported operating profit of $1.85 million on sales of $14.7 million for its 1997 fiscal year.
Gabo produces polybutylene pipe extrusions and plastic and metal fittings used for central heating and domestic hot-and-cold water installations. It also manufactures plastic ducting and fittings for telecommunications uses, according to Polypipe of Doncaster, England.
``The acquisition provides us with an established product range and a new customer base in Germany,'' said Polypipe Chairman Kevin McDonald.
``[Gabo's] successful experience in polybutylene hot-and-cold water systems will be particularly beneficial to Polypipe, in that we intend to launch a similar system in the [United Kingdom] next year.''
The acquisition is the latest in a string of takeovers by Polypipe, which has been expanding strongly its profile business in particular. The group already extrudes a range of plastic water, drainage and agricultural pipes, ducting and profiles in France and Poland.
Polypipe's first German purchase has a record of exporting almost a third of its output to other European countries.
This past spring, Polypipe acquired two British molding companies — B&H (Leicester) Ltd. and Celmac Group Ltd. B&H of Loughborough, England, molds single and twin-wall PE, PP and unplasticized PVC pipes and fittings for road gullies and other civil engineering works, while Celmac of Manchester, England, compression molds toilet seats, bath panels and other bathroom fittings.
In fiscal 1997, Polypipe had sales of more than $389 million, with pretax profit up 15 percent at $55 million.