National Hire buys Australian pump maker Sykes Group

By Murray Pollok16 November 2010

National Hire Group, part-owner of Coates Hire, is to acquire the Australian pump manufacturer Sykes Group for A$50 million (€36 million).

National Hire is using its cash reserves and existing and new debt to acquire Sykes and the deal is subject to an additional A$5 million (€3.6 million) payment of certain profit targets are made. The acquisition is expected to be completed by the end of 2010.

The acquisition, which was announced in October, is being undertaken by National Hire's manufacturing and equipment sales business, Allight. The deal will considerably boost the range of pumps that Allight can sell and provide distribution in new markets for Allight's lighting towers.

Sykes Group employs around 100 people and will have revenues of A$50-60 million (€36-43 million) in the 2011 financial year. It has distribution partners and customers in the United Arab Emirates, Africa, Indonesia, the US and New Zealand, and has manufacturing facilities in New South Wales, Australia, and Dubai, UAE.

Andrew Aitken, managing director of National Hire, said, "This is a company transforming acquisition for National Hire's equipment sales and support business. Sykes pumps employ advanced technology and are regarded as a premium brand in the global pump industry. Sykes Group provides scale, volume and distribution opportunities for National Hire that will help underpin future growth."

Mr Aitken said that in the longer term the acquisitions will "create significant export opportunities for Allight's lighting towers and other product lines".

Sykes Group has been a major participant in Australia's pump market for over 40 years. Since 2003 it has extended its reach into major mining and construction markets around the world and today is one of the world's largest manufacturers and distributors of auto prime pumps.

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