2015 Nonwovens Sales: $378 million
W. Leslie Duffy, chairman of the board; Dale Barnhart, president and CEO; Scott Deakin, CFO
Rochester, NH; Saint Rivalain, France; Green Island, NY; Heerlen, The Netherlands; Hamptonville, NC; Yadkinville, NC. Industrial Filtration locations: North Augusta, SC; Bethune, SC; Rawtenstall, U.K.; Bury U.K.; Stoke-on-Trent, U.K.; Wuxi, China; Shanghai, China
AppLY Mat, Arioso, Biotherm, CRS Wrap, Cryo-Lite, LydAir MG, LydAir MB, LydAir SC, LyPore Defender, LyPore MB, LyPore SC, LyPore XL, Lytherm, ManniGlas, Solupor, dBCore, dBLyte, ZeroClearance. Industrial filtration brands: Fiberlox, Checkstatic, Microfelt, Pleatlox, Ultratech, Powertech, Powerlox, Microcap, Duotech
Specialty insulation, high-efficiency air and liquid filtration media and automotive
Filtration and insulation specialist Lydall continues to grow through acquisition. In July, the Manchester, CT-based company announced it would acquire Texel, a Canadian manufacturer of needlepunched nonwovens. Executives pinpointed Texel’s strength in adjacent markets like geosynthetics, which comprise about 50% of sales, as well as liquid filtration and automotives as key motivators behind the acquisition.
Calling Texel an “outstanding company” with a “strong management team and workforce, Lydall CEO Dale Barnhart said it was the complementary technologies—needlepunch nonwovens—between the two companies as well as Texel’s leadership position in several adjacent markets that drew the company to the acquisition. “We had been looking at Texel for a long time,” he says. “It was not an auction process. It was a negotiated deal.”
Lydall is purchasing Texel from parent company ADS for a reported $96 million. In 2015, Texel’s nonwovens sales were about $72 million, 95% of which were in the U.S. and Canada.
Following the sale, Texel’s business, which includes two manufacturing sites in Quebec, will be incorporated into Lydall’s Industrial Filtration division, which will ultimately be renamed technical nonwovens. Within this division, the groups will be dived into two categories—filtration and advanced materials.
Lydall’s Industrial Filtration division also contains the business it acquired from Andrew Industries in 2014. Comprised of needlepunched nonwovens used nearly entirely in filter media bag applications, this business included manufacturing assets in the U.S., the U.K. and China. Like Andrew, Texel’s business comprises solely needlepunch nonwovens with three plants in Canada but its more diverse market presence was attractive to Lydall.
“The acquisition gives us the ability to take similar manufacturing processes and leverage into growth markets like geotextiles and liquid filtration,” says Scott Deakin, Lydall CFO. “We have available capacity in Europe and we see this as an opportunity to take our existing platforms and expand into new geographies with our existing assets.”
The expected synergies between Lydall and Andrew have exceed expectations during the past two years, according to executives, and acquisitions will continue to be on the radar for Lydall as it looks to grow into new markets and geographies. “We will do it in an orderly manner,” Barnhart says. “We are not going out with reckless abandon. As we did with Andrew, we found another great opportunity with Lydall.”
In 2015, Lydall’s industrial filtration segment increased 24% to reach $13 million thanks largely to increased roll goods sales to the company’s thermal/acoustical business. About 50% of the division’s sales were manufactured in the U.S. while the remaining half were split between Europe and Asia.
Meanwhile, Lydall’s existing nonwovens-related business are Performance Materials, which include wetlaid nonwovens for sophisticated filtration applications in the air, fluid power and industrial sects, and Thermal/Acoustical Fibers, which includes Lydall’s polyester needlepunch technology which primarily serves the automotives market.
In 2015, Performance Materials segment sales accounted for 19.3% of corporate sales. Sales in this segment decreased 12.4% compared to 2014 due to decreased sales volumes and the impact of foreign currency. Filtration product sales decreased 12% due to unfavorable currency translation and, to a lesser extent, lower demand for air filtration media in Asia and North America. Meanwhile, lower insulation product sales were the result of decreased demand for the segment’s cryogenic insulation products.
In late 2015, Paul Marold was named president of this division. Prior to joining Lydall, Marold was the COO of Sontara at Jacob Holm and had previously worked at Clarcor and Ahlstrom.
“We are delighted to have Paul join Lydall’s executive leadership team. He brings extensive filtration industry experience with a successful track record in sales, marketing and operational excellence and a proven ability to drive profitable growth.,” Barnhart says. “He is an outstanding leader with a history of creating value for customers and shareholders in the very industries into which our Performance Materials segment serves.”
Lydall’s Thermal/acoustical fibers segment reported a 7.9% sales increase on the strength of the automotives parts category brought on by increased consumer demand for vehicles in the U.S.