Thompson Plastics Group, a multiprocess molder of parts for agricultural and specialist off-road vehicles, is purchasing control of LMC Technik Ltd., a reaction injection molder of polydicyclopentadiene.
LMC Technik of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England, molds parts like vehicle hoods, engine side panels and other large, structural components. The firm, which employs 65, operates one 43,000-square-foot plant in Houghton-le-Spring, England. LMC customers include Caterpillar and Volvo, according to Thompson, which is based in Hull, England.
Although LMC will remain a stand-alone operation, the two firms serve the same specialty vehicle sectors and expect significant commercial and technical benefits from the union.
Thompson runs six plants in England and Wales using rotational molding, pressure forming, RIM and twin-sheet thermoforming.
``With this link with LMC Technik, we are in a position to offer customers the process that is right for their application,'' said Richard Brophy, Thompson managing director.
Here is how LMC's process works: two liquid components are injected under moderate pressure through a mix head into a closed mold. The result forms a rigid thermoset part. The process can mold complex shapes because of the resin's low viscosity, and finished parts retain impact strength at high and low temperatures. Tooling costs are low, according to Thompson.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Rolf Niederhagen, LMC managing director, will retain his position, according to Thompson.
Meanwhile, Thompson is adding a second manufacturing line to a RIM plant in Hessle, England, that makes thin-wall vehicle components using polyurethane.