Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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March 1957.

of Cheltenham.

1888 The Company was founded as Sanders, Rehders and Co in London importing Sarco thermostatic steam traps from Germany.

1908 established an office in New York, began trading as the Sarco Fuel Saving and Engineering Company.

WWI manufacture of steam traps began under licence in USA

1932 a new business was established in London to manufacture Sarco steam traps but under a different brand name: Spirax (derived from the helical spiral tubing which formed an integral part of the steam traps).

1935 Sarco set up its own factory in Pennsylvania, and the company became known as the Sarco Manufacturing Corporation. Sarco-branded steam traps and apparatus were exported to Europe; Sanders, Rehders & Co. had become a selling agent for Sarco products and changed its name to Sarco Thermostats

1937 Spirax Manufacturing Co., after acquiring Sarco Thermostats, moved to Cheltenham. The acquisition gave Spirax the right to use the Sarco brand name as well.

1940s Spirax was granted rights to trade Sarco products in the United Kingdom (excepting Canada), Ireland, Denmark, Holland, Portugal, Sweden, and Norway, while the U.S.-based Sarco retained the rest of the world's markets.

1951 Private company.

Early 1950s: Sarco International Corporation of New York, or Sinco, was formed, which retained the rights to produce Sarco products within North America and also acquired the Sarco steam trap rights outside North America, France, Belgium and the countries in which Spirax traded.

1952 Spirax purchased sole rights to Sarco products in the U.K.

1953 renamed as Spirax-Sarco Ltd.

1957 Spirax-Sarco Ltd. took over Sinco, gaining worldwide rights to the Sarco steam trap brand, other than in the United States and Canada. These remaining rights were subsequently purchased in 1983.

1959 Spirax-Sarco floated on the London Stock Exchange as Spirax-Sarco Engineering Ltd.

1960 Introduced a range of self-acting pressure controls for the first time.

1961 Specialists in industrial heat control, producing "Spirax" steam traps, "Sarco" temperature controllers and "Ogden" automatic pumps. 350 employees. [1]

1963 Acquired Drayton Controls, a control valve and instrumentation business.

Subsequently acquired:

1982 Re-registered as a public company Spirax-Sarco.

1982 Turnover was over £43 million; 2,250 staff employed. Specialists in fluid control equipment. In twelve years grew from 8 overseas subsidiaries to 25.[2]

1990 The Company diversified into pump manufacturing when it bought Watson-Marlow

Subsequently expanded the pump range by purchasing:

  • Bredel Hose Pumps BV, the world leader in high-pressure hose pumps
  • Alitea, a Swedish manufacturer producing small precision pumps
  • Flexicon Liquid Filling of Denmark, maker of peristaltic-powered aseptic filling and capping systems;
  • MasoSine of Germany, manufacturers of rotary pumps for food and cosmetics.

2021 Spirax Sarco Ltd website here.

See also Spirax-Sarco Engineering

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. 1961 Dun and Bradstreet KBE
  2. The Engineer 1982/12/02