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Baker Hughes buys Brush machinery arm to extend portfolio

12 August, 2022

The US energy technology company Baker Hughes is buying the Power Generation division of Brush Group from its private equity owner, One Equity Partners, for an undisclosed sum. Baker Hughes says that the division – which manufactures synchronous motors as well as generators, condensers and control systems – will enhance its turbomachinery portfolio, as well as optimising its supply chain using Brush Power Generation’s manufacturing base and expanding its capacity for projects in both the industrial and energy sectors.

Brush, whose headquarters are in Ashby de la Zouch, UK, operates four plants in the UK, Czech Republic and The Netherlands, with aftermarket service centres in the UK and the US. It specialises in specialises in power generation as well as management systems for the industrial and energy sectors.

“We are delighted to bring the Brush Power Generation division, already a long-established and trusted supplier, into the Baker Hughes family,” says Rod Christie, executive vice-president of turbomachinery and process solutions at Baker Hughes. “The need for electrification in the hard-to-abate and natural gas sectors plays an increasingly critical role in accelerating the path to net-zero. Through this acquisition, we will expand our core electrification capabilities and scope, further enhance our supply chain, and reach new industrial customers who can benefit from our broader turbomachinery and climate technology solutions offerings.”

Brush can trace its history back to 1876 when Charles Francis Brush invented an “electric dynamo” for powering arc lights. Three years later, the Anglo-American Brush Electric Light Corporation was founded in London. In 1889, the business moved 160km north to Loughborough, and was renamed Brush Electrical Engineering.

In 1957, Hawker Siddeley bought the Brush group of companies, including Brush Electrical Machines and Brush Traction, which manufactured electromotive equipment and railway locomotives. In 1996, Hawker Siddeley and Brush became part of the publicly-owned British engineering group, FKI, which was taken private by Melrose Industries in 2008. Melrose, in turn, sold Brush group on to One Equity Partners in 2021.

The Brush Group offers a range of power-related products including generators, condensers, motors, transformers, switchgear and control and monitoring systems. The Power Generation business is its biggest operation and designs, builds and services large generators for the infrastructure, renewables, oil and gas and utilities sectors.

For one gas compressor project in Norway, Brush supplied four 48MW, two-pole synchronous motors.

The Brush Group will now focus on its remaining power distribution and networks business, supporting a zero-carbon future for electrical networks. It will also accelerate its strategic business development.

“The new challenges for our electricity networks that we expect to result from the UK’s net-zero initiative will require our industry to provide agile and adaptive solutions to futureproof the network,” says the Brush Group’s chief financial officer, Nicolas Pitrat.

The acquisition is expected to close by the end of the year, provided it receives the required regulatory approvals.

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