Thorn Electrical Industries
Thorn Electrical Industries, Limited was an electrical engineering business. It was listed on the London Stock Exchange but it merged with EMI Group to form Thorn EMI in 1979. It demerged again in 1996 and became a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index but was acquired by Nomura Group just two years later.
The Company was founded by Jules Thorn and Alfred Deutsch in March 1928 as The Electric Lamp Service Company Ltd.. In 1932, Thorn began making light bulbs in Edmonton, North London. The company grew rapidly to become Thorn Lighting, one of the world’s largest producers of lamps, luminaires and lighting components. The name changed to Thorn Electrical Industries in November 1936. The company later began to diversify by buying Ferguson Radio Corporation in the late 50's and Ultra Radio & Television in 1961.
Other notable brands within the Thorn group over the years have included Radio Rentals, DER (both TV rental) and Rumbelows (electrical goods), HMV (music), Tricity (cookers and fridges), Kenwood (food mixers), Thorn Kidde (fire protection) and Mazda (light bulbs).
On 16 August 1996, Thorn EMI shareholders voted in favour of demerging Thorn again and the electronics and rentals divisions were divested as Thorn plc.
Thorn was acquired by Future Rentals, a subsidiary of Nomura Group in 1998; it subsequently passed to Terra Firma Capital Partners who set up the BrightHouse chain. The remainder of the company was sold to a private buyer in June 2007.
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