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Moog Inc. invests in additive manufacturing by acquiring Linear Mold & Engineering

Moog Inc. (East Aurora, NY), a global designer, manufacturer and integrator of precision control components and systems, announced that it has acquired 70% ownership of Linear Mold and Engineering, with an option to acquire the remaining 30%. Terms of the investment were not disclosed.

A privately held company based in Livonia, MI, Linear Mold and Engineering has 120 employees and specializes in metal additive manufacturing (AM). It provides engineering, manufacturing and production consulting services to customers across a wide range of industries including aerospace, defense, energy and industrial.

Sales for the 12 months ended September 2015 were approximately $21 million. The acquisition is expected to be neutral to Moog's 2016 earnings per share.

"We are excited to welcome Linear to Moog," said Sean Gartland, Vice President of Strategic Growth Initiatives at Moog. "We see significant potential for metal additive solutions in our core markets—aerospace, defense and industrial applications—in addition to the markets and customers that Linear is already serving.

Linear was founded by John Tenbusch in 2003 as a service-focused business and began developing specialized molds and tooling for plastic-forming applications. As one of the early adopters of metal AM in North America, the company was able to exploit the advantages it offered for enhanced product feature sets, rapid design cycles and high customization. Over the last five years, Linear has leveraged its AM design and process expertise to build an outwardly focused AM services business.

Tenbusch released a statement to customers and suppliers on Dec. 10, reassuring them about the future of the company. "Our goal is to strengthen our position as the leader in additive manufacturing and to better serve you as the 3D metal printing service of choice. Though Moog will be a majority shareholder, I will remain actively involved in helping integrate our supplementary services and looking for innovative ways to apply and maximize AM.

"Moog, like us, views metal AM as an emerging business with significant growth potential, and sees that as their reason for the strategic investment. Our first priority is to strengthen and grow the Linear base by growing the Linear capacity. Moog does not intend to reorient Linear to an exclusive internal source; instead, they will invest in capital equipment and facilities expansion to grow our business and the number of customers we serve.

"Furthermore, it's important to note that our commitment to our traditional moldmaking business remains the same. Because AM capability is an important aspect of traditional manufacturing, especially when focused in areas of conformal cooling, we will continue to invest in our current customers and employees."

Tenbusch noted that the company's name has changed slightly to Linear AMS, emphasizing its focus on AM services and solutions. "Our core value remains: To make a difference in everything we do for you," Tenbusch added.

Moog's high-performance systems control military and commercial aircraft, satellites and space vehicles, launch vehicles, missiles, automated industrial machinery, wind turbines, marine and medical equipment.

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