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March 15, 2019

Volume 6 Issue 11

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Fuchs Acquires Australian Lube Blender

Fuchs Petrolub signed an agreement to acquire independent lubricant blender Nulon Products Australia, an expansion into the competitive retail market for automotive lubes down under. Terms were not disclosed.

Family-owned, 39-year-old Nulon manufactures lubricants, coolants and additives for the automotive aftermarket sector. Nulon-branded products generate sales revenue of about AU$40 million (U.S. $28 million) a year, according to a March 6 news release from Mannheim, Germany-based independent lubricants blender Fuchs Petrolub, which wholly owns Fuchs Australasia. Nulon products are sold through auto parts stores, including national retail chains such as Repco, and in 205-liter drums to vehicle service and fleet workshops.

“The addition is part of Fuchs Australasia’s expansion into the automotive retail sector and complements its existing automotive, mining, industrial and OEM businesses,” Fuchs said in the news release, adding that the Nulon brand and 65 employees will be retained, “and the products will continue to be manufactured locally.”

Nulon and Fuchs are each expanding manufacturing facilities in Australia. Fuchs last year opened a new, larger lubricant blending plant in Beresfield, New South Wales state, about two hours north of Sydney. It is also expanding its grease plant in Victoria state. Nulon last year lodged plans with the NSW state planning authority to build a $10 million, 11,000 square meter production and warehousing facility in western Sydney to replace its smaller existing factory.

“We see exciting opportunities ahead for both brands,” Stefan Fuchs, chairman of the executive board of Fuchs Petrolub, said. Fuchs is the world’s largest independent lubricant maker and has operations in 58 countries. The company is one of the five top-selling lubricant brands in Australia, according to a 2019 IBIS World market report. It is a significant player in the Australian mining and transport industries.

“This acquisition is a very strong fit for both Fuchs and Nulon,” Wayne Hoiles, managing director of Fuchs’ Australian unit, said in the news release. “It’s two family-run businesses coming together. Fuchs’ strong research and development capabilities will enhance the innovation platform that Nulon is best known for.”

Fuchs said the takeover is expected to be finalized at the beginning of the April-June quarter. A contact at Nulon told Lube Report, “April 1 [will be] the first day of Fuchs’ management of this company.”