Consett firm Barkell lined up for US acquisition

A Consett-based company that makes custom-built air handling units is set to be acquired by a New York Stock Exchange-listed temperature control products manufacturer

Barkell, which employs around 110 workers, has entered into exclusive negotiations with Modine Manufacturing, which expects to make the buy through a Leeds-based subsidiary.

The deal, which will extend Modine’s current product offering, is likely to close during the first quarter of 2014, but is subject to successful completion of due diligence.

Established in 1981, Barkell has focused on the custom air handling market within the UK.

Its designs can be tailored to suit any application and have been used everywhere from hospitals to shopping centres.

In the company’s latest filed accounts, for the year to April 30, 2012, Barkell reported pre-tax profits of £148,000 on sales £10.5m.

Its co-founder and director, Barry Phillips, said: “I am incredibly proud of the business we have built at Barkell and am confident that Modine is the right partner to help us bring the Barkell business to the next level while at the same time maintaining the culture of excellence and customer service for which Barkell is known.”

Clive Parkman, a managing director for Modine’s Airedale subsidiary, added: “Everyone at Modine is excited about the opportunities Barkell and Airedale can bring to each other.

“We have been working together for a number of years and are pleased we are moving forward with this next step.

“With a focus on the air handling market, Barkell offers Airedale – and thus Modine – an excellent opportunity to expand both our product and service solutions to new and current customers.”

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