Business Fund backed North Wales Engineering firm

One of the first deals by the £136m Wales Business Fund has been completed after it backed a North Wales engineering firm's acquisition of a parts manufacturer which recently entered administration.

Lomax Offshore Couplings has been purchased by Peerless Gas Controls, which operates out of Bagillt in Flintshire. The deal is one of the first to be made from Finance Wales' £136m Wales Business Fund, that launched in September 2016 with backing from the European Regional Development Fund and Welsh Government.

The company was introduced to Finance Wales by the Welsh Government.

Lomax Offshore Couplings entered administration on 21 October 2016, with Charles MacMillan of Beever and Struthers appointed administrator. The business manufactures and supplies parts for the oil and gas and aerospace industries.

Meanwhile, Peerless Gas makes and supplies gas solenoid valves and components such as gas isolation valves, variable control valves and oil valves, which are used in domestic cookers and gas fires, as well as gas and electric thermostats. Its existing clients include Rangemaster/Aga, Whirlpool/Indesit and Dimplex.

The acquisition deal is expected to enable Peerless Gas to diversify its engineering and manufacturing operation and create three new jobs. 

Peerless Gas managing director Steve Crutchley said: "We've had a lot of success selling Welsh-made parts to the white goods market.

"With the purchase of Lomax we'll be able to offer a wider range of parts to our existing client base as well as offering parts to new markets through Lomax's existing relationships. The increase in business we can generate will not only secure jobs in Burnley, where Lomax have always been located, but increase the amount of machining work at our Flintshire base - creating and safeguarding jobs at Peerless Gas."

Economy secretary Ken Skates said: "The Wales Business Fund is set to play an important role in supporting SMEs across Wales to accelerate their investment and growth plans and to develop their home markets and to compete internationally.

"I am delighted to hear it is enabling Peerless Gas to expand its capacity, capability and competitiveness and diversify into new products and markets and generate new business opportunities."

Finance Wales is an active co-investor and worked with other funders and existing investors on the deal. A flexible investor, it offers debt, equity and mezzanine packages to Welsh small and medium-sized enterprises.

Finance Wales currently manages nearly £1bn of funds in Wales and can offer investments from £1,000 up to £3m per investment round.

Thursday Dec 1, 2016
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