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25% of Australian electrical and home automation Company HPM has been sold to a South African Private investment bank, Investec Bank (Australia) Limited.

A new CEO of HPM, Peter Abrey the former Managing Director of Vodaphone has been appointed. David Peaston the former General Manager of HPM’s Automation Division has resigned.

 HPM which is a privately owned family Company is set to initiate a major expansion program up to compete up alongside the likes of Clipsal, Dynalite, the Hills Industries owned Company Crestron Control Solutions and AV Technology distributors of AMX. The Company employs in excess of 1,000 people operating from facilities including 8 factories in Australia and 2 factories in New Zealand. Underpinning the Companies operations is a strong commitment to locally developed technology; this could change next year, with the Company now chasing new products from overseas in an effort to compete in the IP Automation market. The purchase price of the 25% equity has not been revealed however it is estimated to have been tens of millions of dollars.

 Plastic moulding excellence is an HPM hallmark and is spearheaded from the company’s $22million state of the art plastics factory in Sydney. Opened in 1998, the factory produces more than 1.2million mouldings daily. HPM claim that an ongoing investment in surface mount technology, pick and place lines and robotics ensures world-class electronics products. More than 35 engineers and designers make up the research and development program that has been recognised internationally.

 David Peaston the former General Manager of HPM’s Automation Division said” The investment was needed. HPM is a family run business and the current directors recognised that they needed to bring in new management to move the business forward. During the past few years the Company has been as competitive as it should be and I am certain that this will change under the new management”

 Investec Bank (Australia) Limited has other investments in Australia including AAV which comprises of 3 businesses, being: Staging Connections, an audio visual and theming company in Australia with 90% of Australian four and five star hotels under long term contract.

51% shareholding in AAV Regency which is Australia’s market leader in the manufacture of DVD’s, CD’s, VHS and audio tapes for copyright owners in the music, video and audio industries.

 

Digital Picture Network, Australia’s largest post-production house for film and television.

API – a national pharmacy distribution network that includes a number of retail banner groups such as Chemworld and Soul Pattinson. It also includes New Price Retail, a beauty, health and lifestyle retail group with approximately 370 stores both owned and franchised.

 

They also have investments in Fone Zone which is a national 100 store mobile communications retailer.

Betta Foods – market leading manufacturer of ice cream cones in Australia and New Zealand as well as a manufacturer of confectionary for the major retail chains.

 

Millers Retail – comprises two distinct areas; women’s retail and discount variety. The apparel division has approximately 650 stores with the brand names of Millers Fashion Club, Cross Roads, Katies and 1626. Discount variety has approximately 350 stores under the brand names Crazy Clarks, Go-Lo and Chickenfeed.

Mitre 10 MEGA – Mitre 10 is one of Australia’s best-known brands. Mitre 10 MEGA, owned by Mitre 10 and IWPE, has entered the warehouse segment of the hardware market. Its plan is to roll out 52 new stores over the next 5 years. The first 5 stores have already opened.

 

More to follow on this story.

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