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Lincoln Electric Buys Vizient to Drive Automation Growth

In an attempt to advance its automation growth strategy, Lincoln Electric Holdings Inc. LECO acquired Vizient Manufacturing Solutions (Vizient). Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Headquartered in Bettendorf, IA, Vizient is a privately held robotic integrator specialized in custom engineered tooling and automated arc welding systems for general and heavy fabrication applications, with annual sales of about $40 million. It also has operations in Brazil.

The buyout will help in diversifying Lincoln Electric’s end market exposure in addition to expanding growth opportunities globally. Vizient’s system design capabilities will also complement Lincoln Electric’s current offering.

Lincoln Electric continues to undertake initiatives to drive improved returns through acquisitions. During 2015, the company invested $37 million for acquisitions. In Aug 2015, Lincoln Electric announced the acquisition of Rimrock, with emphasis on the subsidiary, Wolf Robotics. The buyout will help boost its heavy fabrication capabilities and increase its presence in the Western region of the U.S.

Additionally, the company acquired SWP in Aug 2015 to expand its presence and specialty alloy offering. The company continues to search for attractive acquisition scopes that will drive inorganic growth.

Moreover, Lincoln Electric maintains its focus on investment in innovation, continuing with cost-reduction efforts, long-term growth strategies and returning cash to shareholders. However, persistent weakness in industrial production, volatility in oil and gas and commodity prices, and slowing emerging market economies remain headwinds for the company.

Currently, Lincoln Electric carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks in the industry are Kennametal Inc. KMT, Actuant Corporation ATU and Sandvik AB SDVKY. While Kennametal sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), both Actuant Corporation and Sandvik carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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LINCOLN ELECTRC (LECO): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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