AURORA, Ohio—Trelleborg A.B.'s Industrial Solutions business has purchased the remaining 49 percent of the shares of its joint venture in Tijuana, Mexico, from the company's JV partner, Max Seal.
Included in the acquisition is a manufacturing facility that produces watertight seals for a variety of plastic and double corrugated wall pipe systems deployed in water and wastewater systems.
Trelleborg said the JV had been fully consolidated financially prior to the company's purchase of the business. The deal closed Feb. 5.
Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed, but the former JV's work force of about 130 will be retained by Trelleborg and continue operating out of the Tijuana factory. Once the deal closed, it became part of Trelleborg Seals and Profiles Americas, headquartered in Aurora.
In addition to its plant in Aurora, Trelleborg Seals and Profiles Americas, which has a coverage area of North, Central and South America, also oversees manufacturing facilities in Milford, N.H.; Bonne Terre, Mo.; and Queretaro, Mexico.
Smith McKee, who serves as managing director of the Seals and Profiles Americas business, said the operation in Tijuana will be named Trelleborg Pipe Seals Americas for the time being, but that could change.
Alan Guzowski, who had served as managing director of Max Seal, will exit the business, Trelleborg said. It added that McKee, who has been the managing director of the Sealing Profiles Americas operation since 2008 and head of the Seals and Profiles Americas business since it was formed in the beginning of 2019, will take over leadership duties of the Tijuana unit.
"This marks the start of an exciting new chapter for the business as we seek to continue our growth and development," McKee said. He added that the deal to acquire all of the Tijuana business has been in the works for a few years "and we're excited for the process to finally be completed."
Complete ownership of the Tijuana operation will allow Trelleborg Seals and Profiles to integrate it with the rest of the pipe seals business, he said.
Trelleborg purchased 51 percent of the Max Seal business in March 2014, and since then the two companies have been developing polymer-based sealing systems, including rubber gaskets, at the plant.
Trelleborg had an option to acquire the outstanding shares of the business under a pact the two companies signed at the time it acquired a majority stake in the unit.
From 2011 to 2014, Max Seal was strictly a distributor of Trelleborg's Forsheda brand products. "The JV was established in 2014 to enable us to expand into Latin America and create better customer proximity through local production," said Magnus Andersson, business unit president of the Seals and Profiles segment.
"The decision to take full control of operations means that we are more able to serve our growing customer base in the region and drive greater efficiencies in production" and the supply chain, he said.
As it was finalizing the deal to purchase the outstanding shares of the Mexican JV, Trelleborg Industrial Solutions' Seals and Profiles Americas operation was also completing construction of its new 156,000-sq.-ft. manufacturing and headquarters facility in Aurora.
It has consolidated three local plants along with another production site previously located in Bristol, Ind., into the Aurora complex, McKee said. The grand opening of the facility is slated for mid-April, he said.
In addition to the sealing systems produced by the Seals and Profiles Americas business, Trelleborg Industrial Solutions manufactures industrial hose, oil and marine components, industrial anti-vibration systems and polymer boots.