T&B Buys Homac, to Sell PVC Pipe Business

Thomas & Betts Corp. (T&B), Memphis, has acquired The Homac Manufacturing Co., a privately held manufacturer of components used in utility distribution and substation markets, as well as the industrial and telecommunications markets, for $75 million. In 2007, Homac's sales were approximately $65 million.

In a separate transaction, T&B said it will sell its plastic pipe operations.

“Homac is a leader in the market for secondary underground distribution connectors and has an excellent reputation for quality, innovation and service,” said Dominic J. Pileggi, chairman and chief executive officer. “This acquisition of market-leading brands and technology is highly complementary to Thomas & Betts' portfolio of power delivery products and is consistent with our goal of providing a broad line of high-quality, value-added products to customers in key electrical markets.”

While there is some overlap between the two product lines, T&B will benefit from the acquisition, said Patricia Bergeron, T&B's vice president of investor and corporate relations.

“Regarding Homac, there may be a minimal amount of overlap in some products but they are really the leader in low-voltage, secondary underground, which is a great complement to our existing Elastimold product line,” Bergeron said in January after the acquisition was announced. “Homac also has great technology — also an excellent addition to our portfolio.

“We've just begun integrating Homac and haven't released any other information on plans regarding sales reps, etc., yet,” she said.

In other news, T&B said it has decided to sell its plastic pipe operations, which generated annual sales of about $230 million.

T&B will keep the Carlon fittings business and has moved production of these products into T&B facilities, said Bergeron. T&B acquired the business as part of its $450 million purchase of Lamson & Sessions Co., a deal that closed in November.

Morgan Joseph & Co. is the exclusive financial adviser for the sale of the operations, which are headquartered in Cleveland, the company said. Carlon tried to sell the PVC pipe business when it was part of Carlon.

T&B reported third-quarter net earnings of $51.3 million, up 15.3 percent from $44.5 million in the third quarter of 2006.

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