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Aerospace family business sold for £54 million

Weston, a UK-based family-owned manufacturer of commercial aerospace parts, has been acquired by the Senior Group, the London-listed engineering company, in a £54 million (€63 million) deal that ends the family business’s 63 years of independence.

Weston, a UK-based family-owned manufacturer of commercial aerospace parts, has been acquired by the Senior Group, the London-listed engineering company, in a £54 million (€63 million) deal that ends the family business’s 63 years of independence.

Senior announced it bought 100% of the issued share capital of Weston from the founding Sutton family.

The family business, which has facilities in Britain and Thailand, specialises in the production and assemblage of aerofoils, aluminium and hard-metal structural parts, and first-class aircraft-seat structures. Its customers include Rolls-Royce, Spirit Aerosystems and Contour Aerospace.

More than 70% of Weston’s revenues for the first 10 months of 2011 came from equipping Airbus airplanes, while Senior mainly serves Boeing, Airbus’s main rival aircraft manufacturer, which should make the takeover advantageous for the engineering group.

"Weston represents an excellent strategic addition to Senior's aerospace structures division, with Weston's European and Asian locations, and predominantly Airbus exposure, providing an excellent complementary fit with the structures division's existing North American, and largely Boeing, footprint,” Mark Rollins, Senior’s chief executive, said in a statement.

In 2010, Weston reported sales of £42.5 million but the company expects even better results for 2011, as the unaudited management accounts show sales of £45.4 million during the 10 months to the end of October.

Weston was established in 1948 by Richard Sutton. Its current management team, which include Richard’s son Geoffrey Sutton as the company’s chief executive and grandsons Richard and Jim as managing director and co-director respectively, will continue to manage the business. 

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