ITT buys Precision Stainless

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- ITT Industries has agreed to buy Springfield-based Precision Stainless, the companies said.

ITT, a White Plains, N.Y.,-based maker of pumps, valves and defense systems, has signed a preliminary agreement to buy all of Precision's assets in the deal expected to close in mid-January.

Terms of the sale, announced Wednesday, were not released.

Precision, which makes stainless-steel tanks for the pharmaceutical, food and beverage industries, will become part of ITT's Engineered Valves. The division produces valves for the same sectors.

Precision's co-owners, president Thomas Singleton and chief executive officer Patrick McKee, said the deal will be a good fit and comes at the right time.

"We started to see a changing environment in our marketplace about a year ago, and it was then that we began seeking a partner," McKee said.

Singleton and McKee formed Precision in 1984. They will continue with the company after the deal is finalized.

"The visions of both companies together are greater than the vision of each company individually," McKee said.

The company employs 265 people at its 120,000-square-foot plant in Springfield. All will be offered the chance to continue working at the plant, Singleton said.

"It's a very close match culturally," Singleton said. "The benefits they'll offer will be as good or better than what's offered now."

Teamsters Local 245 represents most of the workers, a relationship that likely will continue, said Engineered Valves spokesman Bjorn von Euler.