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Héroux-Devtek expands into Europe with U.K. acquisition

‘The acquisition of APPH brings significant and immediate strategic benefits to Héroux-Devtek,’ says chief executive officer Gilles Labbé.

Phil Carpenter/The Canadian Press

Canadian aircraft components maker Héroux-Devtek Inc. is expanding into the European market with the $124-million (U.S.) acquisition of a British-based landing-gear company.

Longueuil, Que.-based Héroux-Devtek said on Monday it has acquired the entire share capital of APPH Limited and U.S.-based APPH Wichita Inc., subsidiaries of BBA Aviation PLC.

The deal strengthens Héroux-Devtek's core business of landing-gear systems, which it decided to focus on when it sold its aerostructure and industrial products divisions in 2012.

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APPH booked total revenue of $77-million and earnings of about $12.5-million last year.

The transaction is being financed with available cash and existing credit facilities.

The deal includes four plants in Britain and one plant in Wichita, Kan. with a combined workforce of about 400 people.

APPH has a design engineering department of about 40 people and main design programs include landing gear systems for the Hawk, SAAB Gripen, AW101, CJ27J Spartan and EC175 aircraft.

"The acquisition of APPH brings significant and immediate strategic benefits to Héroux-Devtek, while strengthening its global competitive position and status as a leading landing gear system provider for aircraft weighing less than 100,000 pounds," said Héroux-Devtek president and chief executive officer Gilles Labbé.

"APPH expands our geographical footprint into the European market, provides us with significant content on several leading programs, further increases and diversifies our customer base, and provides greater exposure to the attractive aftermarket business."

The deal also gives Héroux-Devtek an enhanced presence in the proprietary rights field, he added.

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The company's revenue mix is expected to be 54 per cent military and 46 per cent commercial, with about 25 per cent of sales coming from proprietary products and 75 per cent from built-to-print operations.

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About the Author
Quebec Business Correspondent

Bertrand has been covering Quebec business and finance since 2000. Before joining The Globe and Mail in 2000, he was the Toronto-based national business correspondent for Southam News. He has a B.A. from McGill University and a Bachelor of Applied Arts from Ryerson. More

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