Invensys, formerly BTR and Siebe, last week began the long-awaited disposal of its automotive operations with the £42m sale of its Australian Automotive Engineered Polymer Systems Division to Austrim Nylex.
Sources close to the company indicate that other automotive businesses will follow shortly, netting about £700m in total. The cash sale of the polymer business brings total sale proceeds since the Siebe and BTR merger to £640m.
Invensys has indicated it will sell off £1.8bn worth of assets and return £1bn to shareholders through a share buy-back.
The sale in Australia was accompanied by news of an acquisition in the US, where it has bought Best Power from SPX Corporation for £145m. Best Power makes and services uninterruptible power supplies for the computer, telecommunications and factory automation industries, and last year produced operating profits of £14m on sales of £130m.
Chief executive Allen Yurko said the power systems division had been identified early in the merger process as one of Invensys’s core areas for development.