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Graco Closes Twin Acquisitions

Zacks Equity Research

Graco Inc (GGG) recently announced the completion of two acquisitions in December that will add to its ground water and landfill fluid management capabilities. Graco acquired QED Environmental Systems (:QED) - a leading manufacturer of fluid management solutions for the growing environmental monitoring and remediation markets. Graco also purchased EcoQuip, a designer and producer of eco-friendly vapor abrasive blasting systems for coating removal and surface preparation. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

QED produces a variety of pump systems for groundwater sampling and remediation efforts, landfill liquid and gas management and helps in the removal of harmful chemicals from groundwater and drinking water supplies. EcoQuip produces environmentally-friendly blasters that remove most air-borne dust particles while using less water to complete the tasks of traditional sand-blasters.

The strategic acquisitions are aimed to gain more exposure in niche markets. The specialized fluid management products of QED and EcoQuip will benefit from Graco’s dedication to innovative new product development.
The combined sales for the two acquisitions for the recent trailing 12-month period were approximately $30 million. Moving forward, Graco expects to continuously invest in its businesses to diversify and expand its product portfolio to augment its position in the market.

Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minn., Graco supplies technology for management of fluids in both industrial and commercial applications. The company designs, manufactures, and markets systems that move, measure, control, dispense, and apply fluid materials. The company’s key growth drivers include development and marketing of new products, expansion of the global distribution network, foraying into new markets with technology and channel expansion.

Graco currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Other stocks that look promising and are worth considering now are Barnes Group Inc (B), Altra Industrial Motion Corp. (AIMC) and Middleby Corp (MIDD), each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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