Pottery firm Dudson has strengthened its global business by taking over a French porcelain manufacturer.
The Stoke-on-Trent tableware-maker has bought French ceramics company Sarreguemines Vaisselle for an undisclosed sum.
It is Dudson’s second ever international acquisition, after it bought the flatware division of US company Myco Tableware in 2007.
Sarreguemines Vaisselle turns over £7.7 million and employs 135 people at its high-tech factory base in Digoin, near Lyon and its Paris sales office. It principally makes vitro-porcelain ware for the French catering and hospitality industry.
Dudson chairman Ian Dudson said: “This well-established company is renowned in France for its technical and manufacturing innovation. Dudson is an ambitious company and the acquisition of Sarreguemines will contribute significantly to our strategic objectives.”
Dudson supplies tableware for the Dorchester Hotel, Luton Hoo and Virgin trains, all produced in two factory sites in Stoke-on-Trent.
The company, which employs about 500 people, exports more than 70 per cent of production to more than 100 countries worldwide.
Chief executive Max Dudson said the acquisition demonstrates the firm’s commitment to the pottery industry.
He added: “Our business plan for the integration of Sarreguemines into the existing group will include further investment, particularly in the area of sales and marketing. It will help safeguard all our existing manufacturing in the UK with the complementary nature of the production in France and it reinforces our belief and commitment to having ceramic manufacturing under our own ownership and control.
“Our commitment to this industry has never been greater. This investment will ensure we move forward and become an even stronger force in the industry.”