Leoni buys American robotics specialist Valentine Robotics

Expansion of systems expertise for industrial robot applications

Nuremberg – Leoni, the leading provider of cable systems to the automotive sector and other industries, has taken over the US company Valentine Robotics in full effective 1 July 2009. With its acquisition of this robotics specialist, Leoni is further expanding its portfolio in the field of innovative, integrated system solutions with a high proportion of engineering and services for industrial robots as well as its position in the North American market.

Valentine Robotics, based in Sterling Heights near Detroit, Michigan, USA, operates in a high growth niche market with its specialisation in programming and commissioning of industrial robots, turn-key solutions for example for image processing and measuring systems as well as related application training. The company was established in 1996 and in the past few years generated average sales of USD 2.5 million (EUR 1.8 million) with about 20 employees.

Leoni has significantly extended its robotics portfolio with this purchase. It comprises the assembly of complex umbilicals and dresspacks with pneumatic, hydraulic and electrical components, their robot manufacturer-independent installation, preventive maintenance and service as well as production of various polyurethane hoses and special control and power cables. In addition there is an extensive range of programming services and training schemes. Valentine Robotics enhances Leoni’s know-how especially in the area of integrated system solutions focussed on engineering and service.

“With our takeover and incorporation of Valentine Robotics into the Industrial Solutions business unit of the Wire & Cable Solutions division we are broadening not only our footprint in North America, but also again our systems expertise,” Dr Klaus Probst, President and CEO of Leoni AG, said in explaining the company's acquisition strategy. Leoni will settle the purchase price mostly with treasury shares.

Valentine Robotics serves established customers in the car and robot manufacturing industry, but is increasingly also successful in the aviation, food production, metal processing, special machinery making, furniture production and health care sectors. This therefore underpins Leoni’s strategy of expanding the proportion of its business outside the automotive industry.