Tripmaster’s parent company buys Pi Technology

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Control Instruments, parent company of Tripmaster Corp., has announced that it has acquired the business of Pi Technology in the United Kingdom. Pi Technology specializes in the design of a wide range of electronic products for the automotive industry, specifically in the areas of engine control systems, infotainment and information displays, alternative fuel applications (including hybrid technology), and body and suspension control electronics. It is based in Cambridge, England, and has satellite offices in Detroit and Frankfurt, Germany.

Speaking at the announcement, Richard Friedman, Group MD, said the acquisition is in line with Control Instruments’ strategy to globalise its businesses. “We focus on niche markets in the global automotive industry, and our customers are global,” Friedman said. “It follows that the group needs to be where its customers are and where they make their decisions.”

Friedman said that Pi Technology has grown rapidly from a start-up business about 14 years ago and today employs 90 engineers, the majority of whom have high-grade technical degrees as well as many years of experience in systems engineering, and hardware, software and electronic design for the automotive industry.

One in four U.S. heavy trucks use engine control systems designed by Pi Technology, and millions of motor vehicles worldwide incorporate architectures, electronics and software designs from Pi Technology. Friedman said that Pi Technology’s excellent reputation and working relationship with all the major international OEMs offers the group a tremendous springboard into the international OEM automotive industry.

Friedman said that Control Instruments Shurlok and Pi Technology will be run as one business, with the management and staff of both companies being retained. Sales, marketing, new business and product development will be managed out of the United Kingdom, the United States and Europe. All manufacturing, certain engineering functions and customer support for South African OEMs will continue to be based in South Africa.

This is Control Instruments’ second international acquisition this year: In March, the Group announced its acquisition of 51 percent of the shares in Tripmaster in the United States for $3.5 million. Tripmaster is a supplier of high-end onboard computers to the North American trucking market.