Flow Dry Technology, an Ohio-based maker of adsorbent products, has acquired a small injection molding company that was a key supplier, in a bid to expand its offerings in thermal systems in automotive and other markets.
Flow Dry, in Brookville, Ohio, said the purchase of Elliott Manufacturing Co., also in Brookville, is its first acquisition of plastics molding capability.
It announced the deal Aug. 2 and noted that EMC has been a supplier of Flow Dry since 1986.
"This is a very strategic acquisition for us," said President and CEO Rahul Deshmukh. "Their injection molding capability and expertise perfectly complement our vertical integration growth strategy."
Flow Dry's products, which absorb moisture in air conditioning systems, are used in 8 of 10 cars in the United States and Europe, and it's in the supply chain of all the major global car makers, he said. Deshmukh sees the acquisition as a path to provide more complete assembly solutions to its Tier 1 automotive customers and others, and grow in a niche where it already has a large global market share.
"Instead of giving them just a component, we can give them a full assembly," Deshmukh said. "Now we can expand beyond the desiccant and filter and the plug to other plastic components in the thermal systems."
Flow Dry has more than 200 employees globally, and has factories in Zhangjiagang, China, near Shanghai, and in Hungary. More than 50 percent of Flow Dry's sales come from outside North America, he said.
Deshmukh declined to reveal terms of the purchase but said all EMC employees except the Elliott family, who started the company in 1973, will remain. Milton Elliott will stay on for a year during the transition, he said.
Flow Dry did not reveal details of EMC, but it's a small operation: its website listed seven injection molding machines, ranging from 33 tons to 275 tons, and customers in automotive, aerospace, medical and consumer products.
Deshmukh said a "big piece" of EMC's sales went to Flow Dry.
Flow Dry is adding people to the EMC operation and wants to grow that business, he said. It's also looking at other acquisitions, Deshmukh said.
"The car makers are pushing more and more demands on their Tier 1s, who are our customers," he said. "The goal is to use this as a nucleus to grow the business."