Thursday, August 17, 2017

News: Cooper & Turner going for growth in wind sector following acquisition

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Historic global manufacturer, Cooper & Turner, which has significant operations in Sheffield and Rotherham, has been acquired by The Watermill Group, an American private investment firm.

Family-owned, Cooper & Turner, is one of Europe's leading manufacturers of bolts, nuts and washers used in the energy, rail, construction and other engineering sectors. It has facilities at its Templeborough Works in Sheffield and at Canklow in Rotherham, where the focus is on the wind energy sector.

Based in Lexington, Massachusetts, The Watermill Group, targets "businesses at a pivotal turning point," bringing in investors with the aim of helping companies achieve their full potential through strategic transformation.

The deal, for an undisclosed amount, sees the acquisition of Cooper & Turner by taking on Andaray (Holdings) Limited and its direct and indirect subsidiaries.

Mid Cap Financial Services, LLC provided debt for the transaction and Grant Thornton UK LLP provided corporate finance, debt advisory, tax and financial due diligence advice to Watermill. K&L Gates LLP provided Legal Counsel to Watermill. Mazars LLP advised Cooper & Turner and Mincoffs Solicitors provided legal counsel.

The vision is to create: "The world's first, truly global mission-critical-fastener supplier with a seamless, one-stop shop solution for the manufacture and distribution of industrial fasteners that meet the highest levels of quality."

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Cooper & Turner senior management, including group CEO Tony Brown and head of group production David Brown, will remain in their current positions and retain a significant shareholding in the company. The Watermill Group are set to introduce complimentary systems and procedures and provide strategic guidance as the company manages the growth in wind energy. Another aim is to support the launch of manufacturing and distribution operations in the United States.

Julia Karol, president and COO, Watermill Group, said: "Cooper & Turner's reputation and track record is virtually unmatched. We are impressed with the company's unwavering commitment to quality and safety, its high customer service levels, as well as its global manufacturing and distribution footprint. Combining Watermill's strategy-driven approach with Cooper & Turner's highly experienced management team, the company has an exciting opportunity to become the world’s first, truly global mission-critical-fastener supplier."

Ronald M. Krisanda, an advisor at Watermill and former president and COO at manufacturing firm, Milacron Holdings Corporation, will serve as the chairman of the Board of Advisors for the organisation. He said: "Cooper & Turner is a compelling business with a highly experienced senior management team, led by brothers Tony and David Brown, whose entrepreneurial vision and operational expertise have been paramount to the organisation's success. We look forward to working with them and their team to uncover new opportunities and accelerate the company's growth in the booming international wind sector and beyond."

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Tony Brown, Group CEO, Cooper & Turner, said: "We are thrilled to join Watermill for this next chapter in the history of Cooper & Turner. For nearly two centuries, this organisation has evolved and thrived – innovating alongside cutting-edge customers and developing industry-leading service levels across established and emerging sectors. Watermill's strategic guidance will be invaluable to us as we continue in this tradition of growth and progress."

Cooper & Turner acquired the former home of Manheim Motor Auctions in 2012 and, to support further growth, a new extension was completed in 2013 to infill the space between the two existing units and create substantially more floorspace. The site incorporates a 120,000 tonne stock holding facility and the group moved towards a full distribution network. Cooper & Turner and McLean Buchanan and Wilson (MBW) joined forces in March 2007.

Joseph and James Turner founded a gun barrel business in Birmingham in the 1800s. Having expanded the business into other areas, including rivet production, the company was amalgamated with Henry Cooper & Co in 1912.

Production was moved to Sheffield and the company continued to be successful, supplying products for a wide range of applications including battleships and Ford's Model T cars. Recent projects have seen its products used in the construction of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai and the redevelopment of Liverpool FC's Anfield stadium.

Cooper & Turner website

Images: Cooper & Turner


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