Forbo Siegling LLC has expanded its operation significantly with the purchase of the Fenner Dunlop lightweight cast urethane and PVC conveyor belting division from Fenner plc.
Forbo also entered an exclusive distribution agreement for North and South America covering lightweight rubber belting products made by Fenner Dunlop Americas Inc.
The sale of the Charlotte, N.C.-based lightweight division, which includes a 120,000-square-foot plant there, was made through Scottdale, Ga.-based Fenner Dunlop Americas for an undisclosed amount. Gross assets of the operation are worth about $7.8 million, according to several published reports. The sale was announced July 11.
Fenner Dunlop said it wants to concentrate on its heavyweight conveyor belt operation, which has been growing via acquisitions and expansions in recent months, a company official said.
Huntersville, N.C.-based Forbo Siegling said it acquired the business to strengthen its Movement Systems Division.
Revenues generated from the acquired unit's lightweight urethane, PVC and rubber belting products totaled about $30 million for fiscal 2007, the company said.
No layoffs of the 40-person lightweight workforce are planned, according to Forbo Siegling President Wayne Hoffman, who added that the transaction ``is a win-win for everyone and there's not a lot of them in the market.''
He said Forbo Siegling, which already operates a 200,000-square-foot factory in Charlotte, will grow by a third in the U.S. with the addition. ``This enables us to be a complete service provider for package and baggage handling applications. It also further expands our offerings in the food-distribution segment, where we're already dominant.''
Hoffman said he also anticipates expanded sales and improved manufacturing within the firm.
``We've been looking for an opportunity to produce more lightweight belts in the U.S.,'' Hoffman said. ``This should open up more business for us.''
He said the purchase not only substantially strengthens Forbo Siegling's Movement System Division in the North American market, but will enable the division to market, sell and distribute its belts globally.
Fenner Dunlop did not have the lightweight division on the market, Hoffman said. ``I approached them some time ago to purchase this business,'' he said. ``We were already a large customer of theirs. It just made more sense to have it as part of our operation.''
The two firms' 13-year relationship has given Forbo Siegling a good working knowledge of the acquired business, Hoffman added.