Indian giant acquires Sheffield parts firm

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A SHEFFIELD company that was saved from closure eight years ago has been snapped up by a subsidiary of Indian global conglomerate.

Attercliffe-based Universal Components UK specialises in distributing parts for commercial vehicles, trucks and semi-trailers and has a thriving export business, selling to more than thirty countries in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

The Stevenson Way company has been bought for an undisclosed sum by Manchester-based TVS Europe Distribution, which is part of the Chennai-based TVS Group.

TVS is among the top ten vehicle components manufacturers in the world, in addition to being one of the largest Indian manufacturers of mopeds and motorcycles.

Universal Components started out in 1908, manufacturing and repairing laminated road springs under the name of Kellett.

In 2004, the then owners, the RAC, appointed Gary Hadley as interim finance director, to considering whether the ailing business should be closed or sold.

Mr Hadley put forward a plan to buy the business himself and brought in David Kernahan, who remains as managing director, following the Indian deal.

The duo turned the business around, built it up with help from South Yorkshire Investment Fund and added a commercial vehicle parts wholesaler with operations in Sheffield, Lancashire and Greater Manchester.

Paul Hardy of Sheffield-based Hardy Transaction Management provided Gary Hadley and David Kernahan with corporate finance advice on the Indian deal, while Schofield Sweeney provided legal advice.