Combat sale key to funding

Heating and air conditioning group Energy Technique sold its warm-air heating products company Combat to a US buyer for £4.2m last week, less than it paid for the business just two years ago. But chairman David Rhead said if shareholders did not approve the sale, there would be `fundamental uncertainty’ about the group’s future funding […]

Heating and air conditioning group Energy Technique sold its warm-air heating products company Combat to a US buyer for £4.2m last week, less than it paid for the business just two years ago.

But chairman David Rhead said if shareholders did not approve the sale, there would be `fundamental uncertainty’ about the group’s future funding arrangements.

Energy Technique, formerly Benson, bought Combat in March 1997 for £4.25m. The acquisition by US-based Roberts-Gordon will wipe out all of Energy Technique’s borrowing for the first time in five years and leave it with £530,000 to pursue acquisition opportunities.

Full-year results showed Energy Technique back into the black at the operating level, with an £877,000 surplus. At the pre-tax level, however, the company reported a £3.4m deficit – reflecting losses of £4.2m on discontinued operations.

The company has promoted Leigh Stimpson, executive director of the air-conditioning division, to the new post of group managing director.