Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Emmanuel Kaye

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Sir Emmanuel Kaye (1914–1999), industrialist

1914 born on 29 November 1914 in Russia, the eldest child of a wheat merchant, and his wife, a botanist who had trained at Montpelier.

Educated at Richmond Hill School

c.1928 At age of 14, on the death of his father, he took a job with a small engineering firm in Mortlake, and studied engineering in the evenings at Twickenham Technical College.

1933 Became a naturalized British subject; known as Kaye

1940 With a colleague, John Sharp, pooled their savings to buy two lathes and set up their own engineering business - J. E. Shay Ltd (a combination of E. Kaye and J. Sharp); they made precision gauges, tools, and instruments for large companies, including Ford and Hoover.

1943 they bought Lansing Bagnall and Co, a small company in Isleworth making electric platform trucks and Imp tractors, which was about to go bankrupt, and founded Lansing Bagnall Ltd.

WWII Both factories made parts for radio (control) mechanisms for bomber aircraft. Also began to develop prototypes for post-war production, among them a new industrial tractor

1945 Introduced the Model A tractor, which remained in production until 1965.

1946 Kaye married Elizabeth Cutler; they had one son and two daughters.

1946 Kaye and Sharp became sole agents for Baker electric fork-lift trucks, relatively unknown Vehicles in the UK

Developed the Model P truck, the first powered pallet truck made in Britain.

1949 Opened a factory at Basingstoke making Model P fork-lift trucks

Gained the concession to import and sell heavy steel mill and die-handling trucks from the Automatic Transportation Co of Chicago.

1961 they opened a new factory and introduced the very successful Rapide electric fork-lift truck.

Kaye displayed his new models to the public at Olympia, and later at Earl's Court; other publicity ventures included a chartered train demonstrating the potential of mechanical handling equipment, and an appearance in a feature film.

1961 Set up Lansing Bagnall International Ltd.

1966 Established a new holding company, Lansing Bagnall Group Ltd

1970 Kaye became chairman of Lansing Bagnall Group.

1977 Began a scheme to provide capital for young entrepreneurs setting up in business.

1977 Knighted

1982 Part of the consortium which acquired the Coventry Climax fork-lift truck business from British Leyland

1989 Kaye sold Lansing Bagnall to Linde, and became honorary president of Lansing Linde Ltd.

Founded Kaye Enterprises Ltd, developing the scheme for young entrepreneurs - enterprises included retirement homes and computer software.

1999 died on 28 February in Basingstoke

See Also


Sources of Information

  • Biography, ODNB