Smiths Group agrees £215 million sale of marine business

Smiths Group has signed a definitive agreement for the sale of its John Crane-Lips marine business to Wartsila Corporation of Finland, for £215 million in cash.

John Crane-Lips is a supplier of marine propulsion systems, seals and bearings, with a strong aftermarket activity covering replacement seals, servicing and repairs.

It had sales of £152m in the year to 31 July 2001, earning operating profits of £18.7m. Net assets are £52m. The business employs 1,200 people in Holland, Japan, Norway, the UK and USA.

Completion of the sale is subject to regulatory approvals and the consideration will reportedly reduce Smiths current level of borrowings, with the company continuing its programme of acquisitions.

This transaction brings the proceeds of disposals by Smiths since January 2001 to more than £280 million.

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