October 11, 2012

Edac Tech buys Cheshire's Smith-Renaud

This is an updated version of an earlier report.

Farmington aeroparts maker Edac Technologies Corp. has bought Smith-Renaud Inc., a Cheshire producer of grinding gear and precision spindles for machining and polishing metal components to fine tolerances – its latest such deal in recent years.

Edac didn't disclose Thursday what it paid for Smith-Renaud. The price tag includes an unspecified sum paid at the closing of the deal and a future earn-out payment.

Financing was through Edac's lender, TD Bank N.A., officials said.

Edac said Smith-Renaud generated $1.5 million in sales the first nine months of this year.

Smith-Renaud is renowned, Edac CEO Dominick A. Pagano said in a statement, for its proprietary products sold in niche markets. For instance, its Holo-Rol bearings, Pagano said, are used in all types of machine tool spindles, including turning, milling and grinding machines.

In particular, Smith-Renaud had specialized technology for designing and making centerless grinders used for cylindrical shapes, like industrial rods and shafts, used in aerospace applications.

More than two years ago, Edac bought two other spindle and grinder makers, SNI and Accura Technics, adding to its Gros-Ite Industries line of spindles and grinders.

The deal was as much for Smith-Renaud's brainpower as it was for the technology the company possessed, Pagano said in a phone interview while traveling late Thursday.

About 12 to 16 Smith-Renaud employees, including designers and engineers, joined Edac's payroll, Pagano said.

The deal did not include, he said, Smith-Renaud's leased facility at 524 West Johnson Ave. In the short run, its production will shift into Farmington, at 1806 New Britain Ave., where Edac's current spindle operations are housed, Pagano said.

Meantime, Edac is preparing to move, with state funding, its corporate headquarters and much of its Farmington production into the 293,000-square-foot former Cheshire production plant of jet-engine maker Pratt & Whitney Co. at 500 Knotter Drive, about a mile southwest of Smith-Renaud's plant.

In June, Edac spent about $11 million to buy Ebtec Corp., an Agawam, Mass., precision metal welder-finisher that helped put men on the moon.

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