Around the Industry

March 12, 2010
General Cable expands in Europe with acquisition of Beru SAS General Cable Corp., Highland Heights, Ky., has acquired Beru SAS, a wholly-owned subsidiary

General Cable expands in Europe with acquisition of Beru SAS

General Cable Corp., Highland Heights, Ky., has acquired Beru SAS, a wholly-owned subsidiary of BorgWarner France SAS, located in La Ferte Mace, France. The business, which makes ignition wire harnesses for European automotive OEMs and the aftermarket, will operate as General Cable Automotive Europe (GCAE) going forward.

EW and BlueVolt sponsoring free Mar. 25 webinar on wire and cable

Broadcast on Mar. 25 at noon EST, “The Wild World of Wire & Cable,” will offer electrical distributors, independent manufacturers' reps and electrical manufacturers a status report on copper pricing, acquisitions in the wire and cable market and potential sales opportunities in the solar and wind markets and the smart grid. Please join Electrical Wholesaling's Jim Lucy and the team from BlueVolt for this free educational event. Got to to register.

Penton Media emerges from Ch. 11

Penton Media Inc., New York, the company that owns Electrical Marketing, Electrical Wholesaling, EC&M and about a hundred other business-to-business publications, websites, data products and trade shows, emerged from Chapter 11, less than 30 days after filing a pre-packaged reorganization plan.

The capital restructuring resulted in the elimination of more than $270 million of long-term debt and an extension of the maturity on the company's senior secured credit facility through 2014. In addition, certain existing shareholders made a significant new investment in Penton, which will provide additional working capital to fund operations and improve Penton's overall liquidity.

There have been no changes to staff, publication schedules or payments to contractors and service providers relating to the restructuring at any of Penton's electrical industry publications.

Lamps, motors and industrial control shipments moving upward

The National Electrical Manufacturers Association's product shipment indices are starting to look better after a rough year. Rosslyn, Va.-based NEMA's lamp indices for incandescent and compact fluorescent lamps increased 6.7 and 15.5 percent, respectively, during the fourth quarter of 2009 from the previous quarter. Sales of incandescent lamps had fallen by an average of 12 percent over the previous three quarters. For the full calendar year, both index components saw a roughly 10 percent decline from 2008.

Motor shipments increased 6.1 percent during the fourth quarter of 2009 according to the latest Motors Shipments Index (MSI). The increase marks the second consecutive gain for the index. Nonetheless, demand for motors remains weak compared to its performance of recent years, as the MSI is still 5.7 percent below the level posted in the fourth quarter of 2008. Adjusted shipments of fractional horsepower motors rose for the third consecutive quarter, while integral horsepower motors saw only their second increase in the past seven quarters.

NEMA's Primary Industrial Controls Index showed a 2.3 percent quarter-to-quarter increase in Q4 2009. After the index plunged more than 34 percent from its peak in the span of just four quarters, it has managed to post gains — albeit modest ones — in each of the last two quarters.