LONDON — Less than two months after its last U.S. acquisition, high-tech electronics and medical components manufacturer Smiths Industries plc has announced it has purchased another North American firm, Florida RF Labs Inc. of Stuart, Fla. London-based Smiths paid $25.8 million in cash for the U.S. supplier of microwave resistor products and cable assemblies for the telecommunication and defense sectors, along with Florida RF Labs' land and buildings.
In March, Smiths announced it had acquired the privately owned Sabritec Inc. for $52.4 million.
Sabritec, based in Irvine, Calif., makes military-aircraft filters and specialty connectors. That was Smiths Industries' third purchase for its interconnect products business in the United States in the past year.
Florida RF Labs, also privately run, was formed in 1983 and employs 160. In 1999 it achieved operating profit of $3 million on sales of $15 million, according to Smiths.
Florida RF Labs specializes in coaxial cable and connector assemblies and microwave resistive devices to protect sensitive electronic circuits. The company also has developed a technology for the manufacture of thin film circuits.
Smiths said the addition of these products complements its own product range for the telecommunications market.
"We are establishing a core expertise in a number of interconnect products, especially those which improve the reliability of base stations, the complex free-standing transmitters at the heart of mobile networks," Smiths Chief Executive Officer Keith Butler-Wheelhouse said in a news release.
"It is a market growing at more than 15 per cent a year, and this deal further increases our opportunities to supply an integrated package of equipment," Butler-Wheelhouse said.