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Uponer pulls plug on UK infrastructure base

Finnish plumbing and heating systems supplier Uponor Corporation is to sell its UK and Irish infrastructure business for 100m to private equity firm 3i.
The deal includes the sale of the share capital of Uponor's UK subsidiary Uponor Ltd near Alfreton in Derbyshire, its Northern Ireland subsidiary Radius Plastics and Cork-based infrastructure business.

Uponer Ltd supplies plumbing and heating systems in the residential and commercial building markets and gas, water and telecommunication businesses. The divestment deal brings Uponor a sales gain of nearly eur 50.

Jyri Luomakoski, Uponor's deputy CEO said 'We have over the years invested extensively in the development of the gas and water pipe business in the UK and Ireland, and reached a market leading position in our segments in the municipal infrastructure sector.

'In the longer-term, we did not regard it as a rational choice to keep the business in Uponor, because its synergies with the Nordic infrastructure business or the local housing solutions business were few. The divested business mostly concentrates on serving gas and water utility customers, hence lacking a firm bond to both our product and our geographical focus'.

The Uponor group acquired the Irish water pipe business as its first non-Nordic acquisition in 1983. The gas pipe business became part of Uponor in 1991 and the Radius telecommunications pipe business in 1998.

The group's remaining UK-based subsidiary company, Uponor Housing Solutions will continue to develop the housing solutions business in the UK and Ireland. It has 110 employees.

14 May 2008


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