Switzerland's Sia Abrasives has acquired the Freudenberg group's British-based non-woven abrasives manufacturing operations. The acquisition will be consolidated as of the end of July.
Canton Thurgau-based Sia Abrasives said that with this new British production facility and its comprehensive range of non-woven abrasives, the Sia Group, which is the world's fourth largest manufacturer of coated abrasives, will "further reinforce its position on the market".
The Freudenberg unit recorded sales of non-woven abrasives in 2000 totalling SFr28 million ($15.6 million). Of this 45 per cent of sales were in the United States and currently employs a workforce of 116.
Sia, which listed on the Swiss Stock Exchange in 1999, gave no financial details for the transaction, which said rounded off its range of abrasives and abrasive systems for surface treatment and finishing, especially in metal working applications and overseas markets.
"By exploiting the profitable market potential, the Sia Group expects to strengthen its operating profit margins," the company said in a statement.
Sia Abrasives opened its first chemical plant in 1867 in Frauenfeld in canton Thurgau. It now employs more than 900 staff worldwide with a turnover last year of SFr226 million.
swissinfo with agencies