Less than two weeks after reporting strong second-quarter earnings, a Bluffton manufacturer has scooped up a competitor it says will strengthen its foothold in the industry.
Franklin Electric Co. acquired Cerus Industrial Inc., of Hillsboro, Ore., for $25.7 million cash.
While Franklin Electric designs and makes submersible motors and pumping systems used to move water and fuel, Cerus designs, manufactures, and distributes motor controls and starters, contactors, protection devices and variable frequency drives.
Last year, Cerus posted $14 million in sales. Franklin Electric posted $821 million in 2011. Earlier this month, Franklin Electric reported a 14 percent quarterly earnings surge of $24.8 million – a record for any quarter in its history.
Scott Trumbull, the company’s chairman and CEO, said the acquisition adds to Franklin Electric’s depth.
“Cerus has deep technical and manufacturing strengths in several areas that are of strategic interest to Franklin Electric including variable frequency drives, starters and control panels,” he said in a written statement.
“While Franklin (Electric) has been a leader in applying drive and control technologies to groundwater pumping systems, we believe Cerus will enable us to further accelerate our growth by increasing our technical and product development capacity, broadening our product line, reducing our manufacturing costs and moving us into adjacent market areas.”
Cerus primarily serves the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning, industrial motor sales and service and pumping systems markets.
John Haines, Franklin Electric’s chief financial officer, said Cerus “is a good deal and provides a growing product line for us.”
The Oregon company employs 45, compared with 3,800 workers at Franklin Electric.