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Fallowfield Township's Gardner Denver Nash acquired, but still going strong

| Wednesday, March 13, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Chris Buckley
Ron Lucy, left, representing State Rep. Peter J. Daley, State Sen. Timothy Solobay, center, and MIDA Executive Director Lue Ann Pawlick check out the fire supression system at Gardnder Denver Nash in the alta Vista park in this file photo from 2011.

Although Gardner Denver Nash has agreed to be acquired by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Co., the future of the Fallowfield Township-based manufacturing facility appears strong.

Last year, the firm moved into the Alta Vista Business park, located just off Interstate 70 in Fallowfield Township.

The Alta Vista site is the divisional global headquarters and North American distribution center for Nash LLC.

The company was the first to move into the second phase of the park.

Gardner Denver Inc. is parent company of Nash LLC.

The company produces liquid ring pumps and compressors for use in the oil and gas, petrochemical, paper, mining, and general industrial products industries.

The company's office staff moved into Alta Vista a year ago and production began in the spring of 2012.

By the summer, the company's Elizabeth facility began moving its steam ejectors and liquid ring production to the Fallowfield Township plant.

The company's North American distribution, research and development, and marine naval units will eventually call Alta Vista home.

Alta Vista Business Park is owned by the Middle Monongahela Industrial Development Association.

When MIDA recruited Gardner Denver Inc. to the park, LaCarte Development Association built and reached a lease agreement with the firm to move its divisional global headquarters and North American distribution center into phase 2 of the park.

John LaCarte, a partner in LaCarte Development Association, said he expects the company to remain viable in the Valley.

“We'd expect there would be no affect on that (facility),” LaCarte said. “In every conversation we've had with Gardner Denver Nash, they've indicated there would be no affect. It will be business as usual.”

LaCarte noted that Gardner Denver Nash has expanded and added new product lines. The company's headquarters is located at the Fallowfield Township site.

“We have no reason but to believe this will be a positive thing,” LaCarte said.

Gardner Denver Nash's site is an industry leader.

The Gardner Denver Nash project was named the Build-to-Suit Industrial Award winner by The National Association Of Industrial and Office Properties, Pittsburgh Chapter.

LaCarte plans to accept the award at an event Thursday in Pittsburgh.

According to a release issued by the company announcing the merger, KKR will acquire all of the outstanding shares of Gardner Denver common stock for $76 per share in cash. This price represents a premium of approximately 39 percent to Gardner Denver share price on Oct. 24, 2012, the day before the Company confirmed that it had begun to explore strategic alternatives.

The merger is subject to approval from Gardner Denver's shareholders, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.

The board of directors of Gardner Denver Nash unanimously approved the merger agreement and recommends that Gardner Denver shareholders vote in favor of the transaction. The transaction is currently expected to close in the third quarter of 2013.

In a released statement, Pete Stavros, a member of KKR and head of the firm's Industrials investment team, said, “The long-term future of Gardner Denver is bright.”

“Gardner Denver is an outstanding business with a rich heritage of manufacturing excellence, innovation and quality that spans well over 100 years,” Stavros said in the statement.

“The company has an impressive group of talented and dedicated employees, and we look forward to working closely with them to drive future growth and value.

KKR is not new to the Valley.

In 1998, Borden and KKR acquired Corning Glass. The glass manufacturer, which includes a manufacturing facility in Charleroi, became World Kitchen in 2000.

KKR is no longer a part of the World Kitchen ownership.

Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or cbuckley@tribweb.com.

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