Swedes snap up refractories firm

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Swedish-owned refractories group Minelco has acquired a 75 per cent stake in Sheffield-based Richmond Refractories.

Richmond was established in 1995 as a family owned refractory brick and materials recycler and is based in Coleford Road, Darnall.

Minelco had been a customer of Richmond’s for many years and has developed a strong partnership with the Darnall business

While Richmond reclaims, screens and sorts recyled refractory material, Minelco processes it and sells it as a cost effective alternative to new material for use in foundries and other applications.

Richmond’s co-founder and managing director, Mark Connor, becomes general manager of the business following the deal, for an undisclosed sum.

He said: “This acquisition will help to ensure the development and longevity of our business. I very much look forward to increasing our recycled portfolio through Minelco’s expertise, presence and contacts.”

Minelco says it acquired Richmond to strengthen the presence of both companies in the recycled refractories market in the UK and help it to start selling in other markets.

The Swedish business, which has its UK head office in Lincolnshire, says the decision was also influenced by increased demand for recycled refractory materials, caused by rising raw material prices in Europe and China and environmental pressures on European businesses.

Minelco’s refractory and foundry products manager, Stan Franey, said: “We see this acquisition as a milestone on the road towards our strategic objectives for recycling. Richmond is a natural fit.”