UK metrology specialist Renishaw has put itself up for sale.
The company specialises in measurement tools such as its FORTiS encoder used for semiconductor wafer dicing equipment, but is probably better know for its metal 3D printing technology and systems. Its optical encoders are used in equipment from ASM Pacific Technology, the world's largest supplier of wafer assembly and packaging equipment.
Founders Sir David McMurtry, executive chairman, and John Deer, Non-Executive Deputy Chairman, own approximately 53 percent of the shares of the Gloucestershire-based company and are looking to sell all their 38 million shares. The current share price of over £69 values the company at £5bn (€5.8bn), although some investors expect the price to fall.
"We are both grateful for our continued good health, however we recognise that neither of us is getting any younger. Now finding ourselves in our 80s, our thoughts have increasingly turned to considering the future of our shareholdings in the company and how we can actively contribute to securing the future success of the business,” said McMurty and Deer. “With that in mind, we approached the rest of the Board to indicate that we felt the time was now right to discuss the best way to achieve this.
“As the founders of Renishaw, we understand the importance of Renishaw's culture, our place in the communities in which we operate, our commitment to research and development, and the loyalty of our staff, our suppliers, and the customers we serve; these together have been the foundation of our success for almost 50 years. With the Board, we are therefore focused on ensuring that we find the right new owner for our business - one who respects and will continue to nurture these important attributes."
The move indicates that a suitable management buyout has not been identified, although that is still an option.