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India’s Tide Water Oil Co. acquires British lube manufacturer

Kolkata, India-based Tide Water Oil Co. (India) Ltd. has agreed to acquire UK-based lubricant manufacturer Price Thomas Holdings Ltd. for GBP 9.59 million (USD 13.8 million) as part of its push to expand its overseas lubricants sales.

The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. R.N. Ghosal, managing director of Tide Water, cited a non-disclosure agreement with Price Thomas, pending the closure of the deal.

Tide Water will buy all outstanding shares of the firm, which between 2012 and 2014 has generated around GBP 10 million (USD 14.38 million) of annual revenues.

Price Thomas Holdings Ltd. owns Granville Oil & Chemicals, which operates a lubricant blending and chemical plant in Goldthorpe, Rotherham. Granville has been in existence for more than 50 years, originally based in Bradford, when it was better known only for its winter products such as windshield washers and antifreeze. Since its acquisition about 30 years ago by Mike Thomas and Garry Holland, Granville has grown from operating in a rented warehouse and small office above Thomas’ garage, to its current headquarters in Rotherham. As well as its own products, Granville also distributes brands including Autosol, Ambersil & Groom, Gunk, Holbros and Jenolite.

Besides the UK, Price Thomas also exports its products to Sweden, Ireland and Bulgaria, among other countries.

In October 2011, Tide Water acquired from BP Plc the global rights to the Veedol trademark for INR 51 crore (USD 7.7 million). But this is Tide Water’s first acquisition of a foreign manufacturing base, which will help it expand sales in Europe. Tide Water has set up offices in at least four countries—Germany, the Netherlands, Canada and the UAE—over the last few years. But it was increasingly felt within the company that it needed access to a foreign manufacturing base to drive sales abroad.

In fiscal year 2015, Tide Water registered INR 969 crore (USD 146.1 million) in net revenues and INR 171 crore (USD 25.8 million) in net profits.