Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Williams Holdings

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Industrial conglomerate

1982 Brian McGowan and Nigel Rudd took control of W. Williams and Sons of Caerphilly through Rudd's property and engineering group C. Price, with the aim of turning Williams around and then investing in other specialised engineering concerns[1].

1982 Acquired Leys Foundries and Engineering where Roger Carr was chief executive[2]

1983 The name had been changed to Williams Holdings, of Monmouth; merger talks with Garford-Lilley[3]

1984 Acquired Aircraft Engineering Components and Blackwood Hodge Vehicles[4]. Also acquired Penine chain and Blakeys malleable castings businesses from AI[5]

1985 Acquired V. Tillotson (Engineering)[6], and J. and H. B. Jackson[7] but disposed of the scrap metal part of the business[8]. Acquired Rawlplug[9].

1986 Acquired Spencer-Clark Metal Industries[10], Fairey Engineering makers of military bridges, from Pearson[11], and Duport, the largest of 5 acquisitions in the past 15 months[12]. Acquired London and Midland Industrials, a holding company[13].

1986 Williams sold 21 subsidiaries to Haleworth, a newly formed company[14]

1987 Acquired Crown Paints and Polycell divisions from Reed International[15]; later bought Berger, Jenson and Nicholson from Hoechst[16].

1988 Acquired L. F. Knight maker of wooden summerhouses, to complement its Amdega conservatory subsidiary.[17]; bid for Yale and Valor[18]; acquired Newage Transmissions[19]; acquired Smallbone Kitchens[20]. Sold 2 North American plastics subsidiaries[21]. Sold 5 subsidiaries to Haden MacLellan Holdings[22]. Acquired Pilgrim House.

1989 Sold MTE, Philidas, Integrated Photomatrix, and Printed Motors (acquired as part of Pilgrim House) to B. Elliott and Co[23]

1990 Nobel Industries Sweden bought Crown Berger from Williams[24]. Sold Acorn brushes, which had been part of Crown, to Lionheart[25]

1991 Acquired Yale and Valor[26]

1993 Management buyout of the engineering division of Williams Holdings Plc; Newage Transmissions Ltd became part of Cortworth Plc in 1993.

1996 Management buyout of a group of 15 building products companies which eliminated Williams' debt; the business included Valor, Rawlplug, Amdega, Swish. The new company was called Newmond; Williams retained an interest in the business[27]

By 1997 had acquired the Kidde fire extinguisher business; then purchased Fyrnetics which added to the Kidde business[28]

1997 Williams acquired the Chubb Security company which would be combined with Williams' Yale and Kidde companies[29]

2000 The group was broken up; Yale was sold to Assa Abloy of Sweden[30]; Chubb and Kidde were floated on the Stock Exchange[31].

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. The Times, Feb 09, 1982
  2. The Times, Nov 12 1994
  3. The Times, Oct 25, 1983
  4. The Times, May 12, 1984
  5. The Times, Jun 29, 1984
  6. The Times, Feb 20, 1985
  7. The Times, Mar 05, 1985
  8. The Times, 20 June, 1985
  9. The Times, Nov 13, 1985
  10. The Times, February 24, 1986
  11. The Times, April 03, 1986
  12. The Times, May 13, 1986
  13. The Times, August 28, 1986
  14. The Times, November 26, 1986
  15. The Times, June 16, 1987
  16. The Times, December 08, 1987
  17. The Times June 16, 1988
  18. The Times July 18, 1988
  19. The Times August 09, 1988
  20. The Times, August 31, 1988
  21. The Times September 13, 1988
  22. The Times, December 02, 1988
  23. The Times, April 19, 1989
  24. The Times, May 03, 1990
  25. The Times June 27, 1990
  26. The Times March 05, 1991
  27. The Times Dec. 5, 1996
  28. The Times, January 28, 1997
  29. The Times Feb. 15, 1997
  30. The Times, May 09, 2000
  31. The Times, November 15, 2000