29 November 2005 Bekaert Combustion Technology NV becomes 100% Bekaert

Bekaert and Belgian Shell have reached an agreement on the purchase of the 25% stake held by Belgian Shell in the Bekaert Combustion Technology NV joint venture, which means that Bekaert becomes 100% shareholder. The takeover price is € 13.5 million.

At the end of the 1980s Bekaert and Belgian Shell jointly began to develop environment-friendly burners based on Bekaert’s metal fibre technologies. These gas burners are used both in industrial and in residential applications.  They offer a higher yield, lower consumption and limit the emission of harmful gases.

Bekaert now wishes to further implement its growth strategy in combustion technologies. With annual sales of € 50 million, this platform is part of the advanced materials business segment. 

The company has developed a position as the leading provider of environment-friendly gas burners for condensation boilers in household applications such as home heating. The company is taking full advantage of the ever stricter environmental legislation in Europe and in the United States. Recently a new generation of burners which are very compact has been introduced.  They are also flexible, as they have adjustable power and can operate with various qualities of gas. These progressive developments emanate from the partnerships that Bekaert has developed with its customers in the heating installations sector.

Another major step was taken at the start of 2004 with the acquisition of the French Solaronics. Environment-friendly solutions based on the metal fibre concept are currently also being supplied for industrial applications. Bekaert offers the paper industry specific systems for the infrared drying of coatings on quality paper and has grown into the global market leader in this area. In view of the major growth being achieved by the Chinese paper industry, Bekaert has now also expanded its sales and service activities there with the production of drying systems in Suzhou (Jiangsu province).

This agreement will be submitted to the competent competition authorities for approval.