Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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E. and H. P. Smith

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Wholesaler of electrical and wireless goods, of Birmingham

Later, general engineers and makers of specialised machine tools

1924 Midland Auto Componentsestablished in Birmingham by Ernest and Harold Percival Smith

1935 Company formed to acquire Midland Auto Components[1].

1936 Public company incorporated[2]

1942 E. and H. P. Smith acquired Redfern, Stevens[3]

1961 Acquired Erdington Jig and Tool and S. T. Pemberton[4]

1962 The company acquired Enfield Cycle Co and instituted streamlining and reorganisation; also bought Leslie and Co (Birmingham) and the Cape Engineering Co Ltd[5]

By 1963 the company was described as "engineers and machine tool makers".

1964 Earnings jumped again; E. and H. P. Smith acquired Alpha Bearings, Hi-Ton Machine Tool Co, Mechanical Tools and Gauges[6]; also acquired Amalgamated Industrials[7]

1965 Having failed to acquire Villiers, the companies agreed to co-operate in certain areas.

1967 Sold Enfield Cycle Co Ltd to Norton-Villiers; the assets of the Enfield Diesel Engine Division had been sold previously and certain assets of the Pedal Cycle and Spares Division had been transferred to Enfield Precision Engineers, another E. and H. P. Smith company. Norton-Villiers placed a contract with Enfield Precision Engineers for manufacture of the 750cc Royal Enfield Interceptor motorcycle [8].

1967 Sold Alder Hardware and H. L. Reynolds to Miles Druce and Co[9]

1969 Pacific Holding Corporation of the USA made a substantial cash injection and obtained up to 46 percent of the enlarged capital of the company[10]

1970 Sold Cape Engineering Co and Capecraft as these were substantially different businesses from the rest of the group[11]. Acquired 30 percent interest in Herbert Morris[12].

1972 Shares suspended for 7 months for the injection of Bryanston Holdings, the industrial arm of Bryanston Finance, whose interest in the group was over 70 percent[13]

1972 E. and H. P. Smith changed its name to Amalgamated Industrials with support of Bryanston Holdings in December, and changed its focus from engineering to internal growth activities and acquisitions.

1973 Amalgamated Industrials sold Hanbush to Derritron in exchange for shares which gave Amalgamated c.26 percent of that group[14].

1973 Sold most of the electrical engineering activities to ESB Corp of USA, including the Nottingham-based Ariel group which included Ariel Pressings, makers of components for televisions, etc, Quality Audio Supplies and Verity Fans (Holdings)[15]

1974 Sold Mechanical Tools and Gauges to Warwick Engineering Investments[16]

1974 Amalgamated bid for the rest of the Derritron equity[17]

1975/6 Bid for the rest of Herbert Morris but this was blocked by the Monopolies Commission, which led to regulations requiring disclosure of smaller interests than previously, and of the true owners of bidding companies. The Commission recommended that Amalgamated divest much of its existing holding.

1976 Sold all of its holding in Herbert Morris to Babcock and Wilcox[18]

By 1978 all of the ordinary shares were held by Seton Trust[19]

1980 Amalgamated sold, in the market, most of the Derritron shares it owned[20]

1981 Options granted to Johnson and Firth Brown to acquire 4 subsidiary companies became the basis for a legal case against Johnsons which they eventually won.


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. The Times, Mar 11, 1936
  2. The Times, Mar 07, 1936
  3. The Times, Jul 28, 1943
  4. The Times, Nov 28, 1961
  5. The Times, Jul 19, 1963
  6. The Times, Jun 15, 1964
  7. The Times, Dec 01, 1964
  8. The Times, 9 March 1967
  9. The Times, Dec 30, 1967
  10. The Times, Nov 17, 1969
  11. The Times, Sep 10, 1970
  12. The Times, Oct 16, 1970
  13. The Times, Dec 13, 1972
  14. The Times, Mar 20, 1973
  15. The Times, Sep 17, 1973
  16. The Times, Jan 24, 1974
  17. The Times, Nov 28, 1974
  18. The Times, May 07, 1976
  19. The Times, Oct 05, 1978
  20. The Times, May 20, 1980