Hardinge Buys J&S Amid Takeover Defense

April 1, 2010
Jones and Shipman added to grinding technologies portfolio

Hardinge Inc. agreed to pay $3 million to Precision Technologies Group Ltd. for the assets of Jones and Shipman, a manufacturer of grinding and super-abrasive machines, and machining systems.

"This transaction is a solid strategic fit for Hardinge adding valuable product lines, as well as the strong Jones and Shipman brand name, to our grinding portfolio," said Richard Simons, Hardinge president and CEO. "Along with expanding our European-based grinding business, J&S products will help us expand our Asian market presence."

The announcement will draw speculation about the Hardinge board’s administrative strategy, as it comes within days of rival Industrias Romi S.A. announcing a cash tender offer for outstanding Hardinge shares. Hardinge directors have been holding off Romi’s $92-million takeover attempt since October 2009.

Hardinge, of Elmira, NY, produces vertical and horizontal machining centers, CNC lathes, grinding tools, and workholding equipment. Its brands include the Hardinge, Kellenberger, Bridgeport, Hauser, and Tschudin product lines.

Headquartered in Leicester, England, J&S manufactures and distributes surface-grinding, creep-feed grinding, and cylindrical grinding machines used by aerospace, medical, mold tool-and-die, power generation and automotive OEMs. J&S has operated continuously since 1899 under various owners since 1899.

Hardinge said the Jones and Shipman transaction will close within a week, and J&S will become part of the company's Kellenberger grinding organization. The operations will remain in place at Leicester.

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