Manchester-based Luxfer Group (formerly British Aluminium) has expanded its Elektron magnesium powders division with the acquisition of US-based Hart Metals, for an undisclosed sum.
Elektron has two manufacturing sites in the US and the UK, and last year contributed £85m (15.7%) of Luxfer’s total sales of £540m.
Hart is a major producer of atomised magnesium powder, both in the US and world-wide, and will be merged with Elektron’s US magnesium business, Reade Manufacturing of New Jersey. Luxfer also operates another manufacturing site in the UK at Swinton near Manchester. All three sites will be retained.
Hart employs 60 people at its Pennsylvania site and is a major supplier to the US defence industry, and the steel, pharmaceutical and agrichemicals industries.
The merged company will focus on developing new applications for magnesium particulate, especially in flare and other defence applications.
Luxfer, which was a buy-in from British Alcan in February 1996, has reported a 225% rise in pre-tax profits for last year to £21m.
The dramatic improvement comes after two years of cost cutting, a refocussing of the group on its core strengths, and a concentration on its higher margin products.