Excitement for Hartlepool-based business as firm gives backing

The Expanded Metal Company was acquired by a private investment firm this week.
The Expanded Metal Company was acquired by a private investment firm this week.

A Hartlepool-based company has been backed to grow in the town after a private investment firm completed a buyout.

The future of the Expanded Metal Company, based in Greatham Street on the Longhill Industrial Estate, was initially unclear after it was acquired by Empire from Gibraltar Industries Inc earlier this week.

However, the Expanded Metal Company’s managing director, Stephen Shears, has reassured staff.

He said: “The acquisition by Empire presents us with an opportunity to develop and grow business in target markets from our historical site in Hartlepool. With the support of Empire, who have a proven track record in leadership and business optimisation, the Expanded Metal Company is now better placed to extend its global reach in key sectors.

“It is an exciting time for employees and customers alike, as the business focuses on operational excellence to provide future growth and continued employment on the site.”

Empire also took over another expanded metal manufacturer, Sorst Streckmetall, which is based in Hanover in Germany. David F Alfonso, chairman and chief executive officer of Empire, said: “We are eager to work with the management teams and employees of each company to support their continued growth.”

Empire engaged McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP, Lockton Companies and SIA Group (UK) London Limited as its advisors for the transaction of Expanded Metal, which was founded in 1890.

Founded in 2004, Empire is a Miami-based private investment firm, which looks to acquire controlling interests in mature lower middle-market businesses.