FCH’s Steel & O’Brien Division to Expand West Coast Presence

March 14, 2023

Flow Control Holdings (“FCH”), a portfolio company of Audax Private Equity and leading provider of sanitary-flow components to the pharmaceutical, food, and beverage end markets, announced today that its Steel & O’Brien Manufacturing division has acquired the U.S. assets of New Zealand-based Ultibend Industries. Terms of the deal are not disclosed.

Through the transaction, Steel & O’Brien assumes the U.S. fulfillment center of Ultibend, based in Torrance, California. The acquisition represents the fifth add-on since Audax invested in FCH last year.

“Expanding our geographic footprint to better serve the West Coast is the next step in our strategic growth plan,” said Scott Kerns, CEO of Flow Control Holdings. “Having a physical presence with a Steel & O’Brien-managed facility in California positions us to serve the West Coast customer base.”

Ultibend Industries, a manufacturer and provider of stainless-steel sanitary fittings, is exiting the U.S. market to realign the company’s focus on its core markets in New Zealand and Australia.  Ultibend, through the sale, is partnering with Steel & O’Brien to provide uninterrupted and expanded service to its customers in the U.S. 

“FCH and Steel & O’Brien have the industry reputation, capability and expertise that give us confidence our customers will be in great hands moving forward,” said Matt Turley, General Manager of Ultibend’s U.S. operations. Turley will continue to serve in a part-time consulting capacity to facilitate the transition as Steel & O’Brien completes the integration of Ultibend’s U.S. operations.

Jesse Martinez from Ultibend has also joined Steel & O’Brien as an Inside Sales Representative and will work alongside the Steel & O’Brien team to continue servicing Ultibend customers.  Jesse will be based in Southern California.

“We are thrilled to have Jesse join the team of sanitary experts at Steel & O’Brien and look forward to working with him to build a presence west of the Rockies that is comparable to our home market in Arcade, NY, and across the Eastern, United States,” said Pete Beyette, General Manager of Steel & O’Brien. “We are grateful to Matt for the thoughtful approach Ultibend has taken and for his involvement during the transition.

Moreover, we are excited to provide Ultibend’s customers the full breadth of our offering for sanitary and BPE fittings, tubing, valves, and pumps, along with our custom machining and fabrication capabilities.”