Sumitomo to Buy Hansen Industrial Gearbox Unit for $105 Million

Sumitomo Heavy Industries Ltd., a Japanese maker of waste-management systems, agreed to buy Hansen Transmissions International NV’s industrial gearbox unit for 75 million euros ($105 million) to expand in Europe.

Sumitomo will use the acquisition to drive expansion in the U.S., Asia, Brazil and the U.K., according to a statement from Antwerp, Belgium-based Hansen. Hansen rose as much as 17 percent to 53.5 pence in London trading, the most in 18 months.

The Japanese manufacturer is seeking to bolster its machinery-components business in emerging markets and is investing an additional 10 billion yen ($123.2 million) in China to expand in reduction gears and excavators. Hansen is gaining new customers in China as part of a geographic expansion, Chief Executive Officer Alex De Ryck said in July.

Hansen will focus exclusively on wind-energy gearboxes following the disposal, it said. Under the terms of the accord, its plant in Edegem, Belgium will be restructured to phase out wind-gearbox lines, with the loss of as many as 125 jobs.

Wind energy accounted for 84 percent of Hansen’s revenue in fiscal year 2010, while its industrial gearbox unit represented around 16 percent of sales, according to the statement. The Edegem revamp will lower Hansen’s wind-gearbox manufacturing capacity by 1,100 mega watts or 13 percent.

The offer for Hansen, which employs 730 people worldwide, offer is expected to close before March 31.

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