Metal Industries, Limited

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Metal Industries, Limited was a conglomerate of mostly British engineering companies. It was founded in Glasgow in 1922[1] by Robert Watson McCrone.[2] In 1953 its activities were described as "electrical and mechanical engineering manufacture and metal trading"[3] In 1967, Aberdare Holdings of South Wales acquired a controlling interest in the group, [4] but was quickly thwarted when M.I. created a large tranche of new shares which it sold to Thorn Electrical Industries, giving Thorn overall control of the company.[5] The City Panel on Takeovers and Mergers referred to "abuses and inequities" that occurred during this chaotic takeover, among others at the time, but declined to recommend tougher regulations.[6] A good history of the company's shipbreaking activities was published by the World Ship Society in 1992 in Ian Buxton's "Metal Industries: Shipbreaking at Rosyth and Charlestown".

The subsidiary companies continued to trade as the 'Metal Industries' group of Thorn until 1970, [7] when it merged with the George Cohen 600 group to become Six Hundred Metal Holdings.[8] In 1976, Thorn sold its interest in the group to the government-owned British Steel Corporation.[9]

Timeline of acquisitions, mergers, sales and closures[edit]

  • 1922: Formed as Alloa Shipbreaking Co., Rosyth & Charlestown[10][11]
  • 1932: Sale of oxygen business to British Oxygen Company[12]
  • 1935: Metal Industries, Limited converted to public company[12]
  • 1940: Acquisition of Electrical Switchgear and Associated Industries Ltd.[13] and its subsidiary Brookhirst Switchgear Ltd., Chester
  • 1941: Sentinel Waggon Works (1936) Limited [14]
  • 1942: Igranic Electric Co., Bedford [15]
  • 1945: Sentinel Waggon Works renamed to Sentinel (Shrewsbury) Limited
  • 1946: Reorganisation: Metal Industries (Electrical Group) Limited set up to organise all electrical business; Metal Industries (Salvage) Ltd., Faslane, to take over salvage business; Sentinel (Shrewsbury) Limited to run engineering business; Metal Industries, Ltd. to become holding company[16]
  • 1947: Ferrous Light Castings, Warrington (completion of acquisition)
  • 1948: Fawcett Preston & Co. Ltd., Bromborough (founded 1758)
  • 1948: Cantle Switches Ltd. (closed 1958)
  • 1949: John Allan & Co. (Glenpark) Ltd. (est. 1898)
  • 1949: Cox and Danks Ltd.[17] (see Ernest Cox)
  • 1952[18] or earlier: Hughes Bolckow Shipbreaking Company Limited, Blyth
  • 1955: Formation of Metind Limited
  • 1955: Acquisition of resistor business from the Rheostatic Company[19]
  • 1955: Acquisition of Finney Presses Ltd.
  • 1956: Sale of Sentinel (Shrewsbury) Limited to Rolls-Royce
  • 1957 or earlier: Shipbreaking Industries Limited
  • 1957: Closure of Metind Limited
  • 1959: Merger of Igranic with Brookhirst
  • 1958: Merger of Finney Presses Limited, Birmingham with Fawcett Preston
  • 1958: Sale of British Oxygen Company Limited
  • 1958: Farmer Brothers (Shifnal) Limited
  • 1959: Avo Ltd. and subsidiary Taylor Electrical Instruments Limited
  • 1959: Olaer France S.A., Paris
  • 1959: Towler Brothers (Patents) Limited
  • May 1959: International Rectifier Co. (Great Britain) Limited, at Oxted, Surrey, joint-owned with International Rectifier of California[20]
  • 1960: Lancashire Dynamo Group, including:
    • Lancashire Dynamo Nevelin, Oxted
    • Lancashire Dynamo & Crypto, Trafford Park (sold to A.E.I., 1967)
    • Lancashire Dynamo Electronic Products
    • Foster Transformers, Wimbledon & Leatherhead
    • J. G. Statter & Co., Amersham
  • 1961 or earlier: New Eagle Foundry, Birmingham[21]
  • 1961 or earlier: Cable Jointers, Crypton Equipment, Dynamo & Motor Repairs, Minerva Mouldings
  • 1961 or earlier: Metal Industries (Europe) S.A.
  • 1961: Closure of Metal Industries (Salvage) Limited[22]
  • 1963: M.I. (South Africa) (Pty.), renamed from Brookhirst Igranic South Africa (Pty.)
  • 1963 or earlier: Dominion M.I. Limited, Montreal
  • 1964 or earlier: Mattel-Marden Limited (joint owned)
  • 1964: Acquisition of 50% of International Rectifier Corporation Italiana S.p.A.[23]
  • 1965: Acquisition of 50% of International Rectifier Europe S.A.[24]
  • 1966: Industrial Automation Controls Ltd.[25] (set up to coordinate Brookhirst Igranic and Lancashire Dynamo Electronic Products)
  • 1966: Disposal of Fawcett Preston[26]
  • Aug 1967: Acquired by Thorn[27]
  • 1970: Merged into Six Hundred Metal Holdings

Chairmen[edit]

Notable salvage operations[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Company Meeting", The Times, Sept 13, 1951, p.8
  2. ^ "Obituary: Robert Watson McCrone", The Times, Apr 10, 1982, p.10
  3. ^ Classified Advertisement, The Times, November 12 1953, p.2
  4. ^ The Times, July 13, 1967, p.19
  5. ^ The Times, July 17, 1967, p.17
  6. ^ "City panel rejects need for market supervision", The Times, Jan 29, 1975, p.21
  7. ^ "Thorn" (advertisement), The Times, Aug 11, 1970, p.18
  8. ^ "Metal pair-up by '600' and Thorn", The Times, Apr 14, 1970, p.29
  9. ^ "BSC pay £3.75m for one-third interest in scrap processor", The Times, Jul7 31, 1976, p.19
  10. ^ Frank C Bowen, "The Shipbreaking Industry", naval-history.net, accessed 2012-04-11
  11. ^ "Metal Industries", Grace's Guide, accessed 2012-04-11
  12. ^ a b "City Notes". The Times. July 29, 1935. p. 18.
  13. ^ "City News in Brief", The Times, May 18, 1940, p.10
  14. ^ "Company Results", The Times, Dec 12, 1941, p.9
  15. ^ "City News in Brief", The Times, Apr 14, 1941, p.7
  16. ^ "Company Meetings", The Times, Sept 20, 1946, p.9
  17. ^ "Company Meetings", The Times, Aug 31, 1949, p.9
  18. ^ "Company Meetings", The Times, Sept 4, 1952, p.7
  19. ^ "Metal Industries expansion", The Times, Jan 21, 1955, p.12
  20. ^ "Metal Industries Limited" (advertisement), The Times, Aug 16, 1960, p.13
  21. ^ "Business Changes", The Times, Jan 27, 1961
  22. ^ Chairman's statement (advertisement), The Times, Aug 2, 1961, p.15
  23. ^ "M.I. drive in Europe", The Times, Jan 24, 1964, p.20
  24. ^ "Metal Ind. expands in Europe", The Times, July 2, 1965, p.23
  25. ^ The Times, Sep 23, 1966, p.19
  26. ^ Chairman's statement (advertisement), The Times, Aug 16, 1966, p.13
  27. ^ "A year of unprecedented growth" (Thorn advertisement), The Times, Aug 13, 1968, p.17
  28. ^ The Times, Aug 18, 1964, p.14
  29. ^ "A Salvage Feat", The Times, Sept 3, 1934, p.12
  30. ^ Share prospectus, The Times, July 29, 1935, p.19
  31. ^ "German dreadnought raised", The Times, May 15, 1936, p.9
  32. ^ "Scuttled battleship raised", The Times, May 1, 1937, p.13
  33. ^ "Grosser Kurfurst raised", The Times, Apr 27, 1938, p.20
  34. ^ "Derfflinger salved at Scapa Flow", The Times, July 25, 1939, p.9
  35. ^ Share prospectus, The Times, Apr 9, 1947, p.9
  36. ^ "Company Meetings", The Times, Sept 4, 1952, p.7
  37. ^ "Hope of salving Finnish ship", The Times, Dec 27, 1952, p.2
  38. ^ a b "Company Meetings", The Times, July 11, 1957, p.17