CRANBERRY TOWNSHIP, PA. Auxiliary equipment maker Conair Group Inc. has announced that Conair Europe Ltd. will be closed.
Conair Europe's board of directors decided Nov. 25 to place the business into voluntary liquidation. The company announced the news that same day.
Conair Europe is based in Slough, England. Conair will support its customers and agents in the United Kingdom and other European countries directly from its U.S. headquarters in Cranberry Township, near Pittsburgh.
A news release announcing the move said: ``The board recognizes and appreciates the hard work by all of Conair Europe's employees over many years, and recognizes the hardship that this action causes to all involved. The board wishes everyone the best during these challenging times.''
A Conair spokesman said Conair Europe employed less than 20 people, and did not do any manufacturing.
Conair got involved in Europe in the 1970s. The company was expanding quickly in material handling systems, dryers, blending equipment and bulk systems. Officials decided to broaden Conair's product line into mold temperature control units and chillers, according to The Making of Conair, a company history book by Conair founder John Reib.
In 1975, Conair bought a controlling interest in Churchill Instrument Co., a British maker of fluid temperature controllers. The company was called Conair Churchill. It became Conair Europe in 1995.
Over the years, Conair Europe added other types of auxiliary equipment.
Even as Conair shuts Conair Europe, the auxiliary company has been expanding in fast-growing parts of the world. The company started production at a factory in Shanghai in 2007. This year, Conair opened two sales and service operations in China.