U.S. giant buys into SA

2011-02-08 00:00

STANDEX, a multi-industry manufacturing giant based in the U.S., has bought a local business, SA Chemical Etching, putting the company firmly on a technologically driven growth path.

The deal is a savvy move by Dave Bishop and his wife Steph.

The business is now known as Standex Engraving South Africa. It was established by entrepreneur Bishop two decades ago.

Standex Engraving South Africa, which is in Umlaas Road near Camperdown, is involved in mould texturing mainly for the auto­motive components industry.

Bishop told The Witness he approached Standex early in 2010 with the aim of initiating the deal.

He said one of the main reasons for the deal was the need for access to key technologies.

“It took us about a year to complete the deal and they now own the business completely.

“Due to the globalisation of the automotive industry, there is an increasing need for accessing the latest technology. Naturally, we approached Standex, which is the industry leader,” Bishop said .

Standex Engraving South Africa’s clients include a number of Durban- and Pietermaritzburg-based automotive component manufacturers.

The company is currently working on a deal with India-based component suppliers Motherson regarding a project for Ford.

Bishop said the foreign influence has already helped the business move to a new level.

“Now we have full access to technology, technicians and research and development. We already have a Portuguese technician assisting us on the floor. They can also direct work toward Standex Engraving South Africa.

“Standex sees Africa as an expanding market. South Africa could be the first of several interests on the continent,” Bishop said.

Standex International CEO Roger Fix said in a statement that the South African company offers a strong presence in a geographical market that is expected to experience double-digit growth in each of the next four years.

The Bishops will remain involved in the key operations of the business.

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