Weir Group

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The Weir Group PLC
Type Public (LSEWEIR)
Industry Engineering
Founded 1871
Headquarters Glasgow, Scotland
Key people Charles Berry, (Chairman)
Keith Cochrane,[1] (CEO)
William Weir (Former Chairman)
Revenue £2,429.8 million (2013)[2]
Operating income £466.5 million (2013)[2]
Net income £335.7 million (2013)[2]
Employees circa 14,000 (2012)[3]
Website www.weir.co.uk

The Weir Group plc is an engineering company headquartered in Glasgow, Scotland. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index. The company operates in over 70 countries employing approximately 14,000 people focused on mining, oil and gas and power markets.

History[edit]

Advertisement for G. & J. Weir Ltd. in the Brassey's Naval Annual of 1923.
Weir boiler feedwater pump

The Company was established in 1871 as an engineering firm by two brothers, George and James Weir, founding G. & J. Weir Ltd.[4] The Weir brothers produced numerous groundbreaking inventions in pumping equipment, primarily for the Clyde shipyards and the steam ships built there. These pumps became extremely well known for their use as boiler feedwater pumps, and for ship's auxiliary equipment such as evaporators.

Under W D Weir, the company turned to producing munitions and war materiel in the First World War. As well as shells, they manufactured aircraft including the Royal Aircraft Factory F.E.2 fighter and bomber.

James George Weir (aviator, son of James Galloway Weir) a director of the company formed the Cierva Autogiro Company. G & J Weir would be a financial supporter of the company during its existence. In 1943, they provided the finances for the construction of the W.9, an experimental helicopter, to Air Ministry requirements.

It was first listed on the London Stock Exchange in 1946.[4] Double-acting Weir steam pumps were virtually standard fitment on British-built steamships, being used for pumping water, fuel, air and much else well into the 1950s, as well as being used on other ships worldwide.

In December 1968 the Weir Group made an offer to buy the rival British pump manufacturer Worthington-Simpson, following an offer by Studebaker-Worthington.[5] In 1969 Studebaker-Worthington acquired Worthington-Simpson.[6] After some negotiation, Weir's acquired 50% of Worthington Simpson.[7] A new joint-venture company named Worthington Weir was set up to handle international sales of the two parent companies.[8]

The debt taken on by Weir to acquire their share of Worthington-Simpson was denominated in deutchmarks, and as that currency strengthened against sterling and the dollar it became increasingly expensive to service.[9] Worthington-Simpson was profitable, but did not cover the cost of debt.[10] During the next decade Weir was forced to sell off many assets and undertook financial recorganization in 1981.[11] After the financial reorganization, Derald Ruttenberg and Jacob Rothschild gained effective control of 40% of the company. Ruttenberg became a board member.[12]

21st century[edit]

In recent years, the company has undergone significant reorganisation both operationally and in terms of its geographic footprint.

In July 2005, Weir sold its desalination and water treatment businesses, (Weir Westgarth, Weir Entropie and Weir Envig) to Veolia Water Systems, part of the water division of Veolia Environnement: Weir Westgarth had been a pioneer of the multi-stage flash distillation process used predominately to produce desalinated water from seawater.[13]

In May 2007, the Company sold its Glasgow-based business Weir Pumps to Jim McColl's Clyde Blowers plc, with the pump company subsequently being renamed to Clyde Pumps Ltd.[14]

Ensci is a branch of weir group.It is located in Bangalore. EnSci is an engineering services provider serving industrial machinery & equipment, automotive, material handling equipment, packaging machinery, heavy machinery manufacturing companies, engineering consultants serving mining, oil & gas, energy, power and industrial sectors.

The James Weir Building on the University of Strathclyde Glasgow campus is named after one of the two brothers who founded the Weir Group.

Recent acquisitions

Transaction Date
Purchased Pompe Gabbioneta, an Italian pump manufacturer for £69m in 2005.[15] 2005
In 2007 Weir acquired SPM Flow Control, Inc for US$653 million (£328 million). SPM manufactures high-pressure well service pumps

and related flow control equipment[16]

2007
Acquired African pumps business, CH Warman Pump Group for $231m (£113m)[17] 2007
Acquired Mesa Manufacturing Inc, the Texan based pump manufacturer for $40m[18] 2008
Bought Malaysia-based Linatex for £138m[19] 2010
Agreed to acquire Indian valves manufacturing business, BDK Engineering Industries,Hubli[20] 2010
In November, 2010, Company announced acquisition of American Hydro Corporation, which makes turbines for hydro-electric power stations.[21] 2010
In November 2010 Weir and Shengli Oilfield Highland Petroleum Equipment Co. announced the formation of a joint venture to provide

high-pressure well service pumps and related flow control equipment to the developing shale gas industry in China.[22]

2010
Agreed to acquire a 60% interest in the South Korean valves business formerly operated by HIM Tech Co Ltd.[23] 2011
Purchased Seaboard Holdings Inc a Houston based wellhead solutions provider for US$675m (£431m)[24] 2011

In December 2010, Weir pleaded guilty to breaching UN sanctions on Iraq between 2000 and 2002. Judge Lord Carloway of The High Court in Edinburgh fined the company £3m along with a confiscation order of £13.9m.[25]

Operations[edit]

With effect from 1 May 2008, the Weir Group reorganised its operating units into three sector- focused divisions in the higher growth markets of mining, oil & gas and power & industrials:[26]

Weir Minerals - manufactures slurry handling equipment and associated spare parts for abrasive high wear applications used in mining as well as in the niche oil sands and flue gas desulphurisation markets. Products include pumps, hydro cyclones, valves, de-watering equipment and wear resistant linings. The division is present in key mining markets, including South and North America, Australia and Africa.

Weir Oil & Gas - designs and manufactures pumps and ancillary equipment for global upstream and downstream oil and gas markets.

Upstream operations specialise in high-pressure well service pumps and related flow control equipment along with repairs, parts and service of pressure control and rotating equipment. Downstream focuses on design and manufacture of centrifugal pumps, mainly for the refining industry. Principal operations are in North America, Europe and the Middle East.

Weir Power & Industrial designs, manufactures and supports specialist and critical-service rotating and flow control equipment, in the main, to the global power sector. The division includes valve operations, a specialist pump business and service and aftermarket operations and is one of only a few businesses globally capable of providing specialist valves into the nuclear islands of third generation nuclear power stations. Facilities are located in Europe, North America, China, Middle East, India and South Africa.

GEHO pump assembly

People[edit]

References[edit]

Sources

External links[edit]