ROGERS, Conn.—Rogers Corp. has closed its transaction to acquire Arlon L.L.C., a global provider of high frequency circuit materials and engineered silicones, from Handy & Harman Ltd. for $157 million.
David Mathieson, vice president of finance and chief financial officer, said on a Jan. 23 conference call discussing the transaction that Rogers financed the deal with $125 million from an existing revolving credit facility and the rest through the firm's balance sheet cash.
“We believe the combination of Rogers and Arlon brings compelling benefits to our customers, accelerates Rogers' growth and delivers significant value to our shareholders,” Bruce Hoechner, Rogers president and CEO, said on the call.
The CEO added that Arlon brings significant growth potential in key markets and provides complementary opportunities in two of Rogers' core businesses—Printed Circuit Materials and High Performance Foams.
Arlon operates three manufacturing plants—in Bear, Del.; Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.; and Suzhou, China—with total employment of about 320. The firm reported revenue of $100.4 million and operating income of $16.7 million for the 12-month period ending Sept. 30. Hoechner said about 75 percent of Arlon's sales came from the circuit materials business with the remaining 25 percent generated from silicone technologies.
“Arlon serves customers around the globe, but has room for greater geographical penetration with the help of Rogers' global network and manufacturing footprint,” Hoechner said.
Rogers said Arlon will bring new capabilities in precision-calendered silicones, silicone-coated fabrics and specialty extruded silicone tapes. Used primarily for electrical insulation, these materials serve a wide range of applications across many market segments, including aviation, rail, power generation, semiconductor, foodservice, medical and general industrial.
Hoechner said Arlon's silicone product technology has been strongest in North America and cited strong growth potential in both Asia and Europe.
Arlon produces its circuit materials at all three facilities. Its two largest markets for circuit materials are communications infrastructure and military/aerospace electronics. It also serves customers in the automotive segment.
“The market for communications infrastructure and connectivity solutions continues to expand with new technology demands continuously emerging and the need for innovative solutions growing,” Hoechner said. “On the horizon, we see 5G, the Internet of things and vehicle safety and driver systems continuing to evolve, leading to greater demand for Rogers' advanced engineered materials.”
Rogers also operates a facility in Suzhou, about 30 minutes away from the Arlon facility. Hoechner said Rogers does not intend to consolidate facilities at this point and highlighted the close proximity between the two plants as an opportunity to work closely together.
Mathieson said Rogers expects to use Rogers' strength across a number of areas—including its global supply chain, shared services and operations to further grow the businesses in the coming 12 months.
“Right now we have no plans to consolidate,” Hoechner said. “Our real intention here is to integrate the two companies, serve our customers extremely well and not have any interruption in service. Both companies have been growing quite well, our view is let's see where we are when we get the back office stuff figured out. Our biggest focus right now is that we don't have any disappointments with our customers.”
Robert C. Daigle, senior vice president and chief technology officer, said on the call that there is fertile ground to utilize both Arlon's and Rogers' research and development capabilities after fleshing out the possibilities with the technology teams on both sides.
“In some cases, especially circuit materials, we're selling to the same market application areas but bringing very different product platforms to the table,” Daigle said. “Some of the capabilities that each company has developed we believe will be leverageable across the two companies.”
Rogers, headquartered in Connecticut, produces engineered materials including electronics solutions for energy-efficient motor drives, vehicle electrification and alternative energy; foams for sealing, vibration management and impact protection in mobile devices, transportation interiors, industrial equipment and performance apparel; and printed circuit materials for wireless infrastructure, automotive safety and radar systems.
The firm operates manufacturing facilities in the U.S., China, Germany, Belgium, Hungary and South Korea.