BURGBROHL, Germany — Rhodius USA, the North American subsidiary of German industrial group Rhodius, announced April 22 that it has acquired the Rhodius-branded business of former exclusive importer Sundisc Abrasives, comprising the customer base, agent network and sales team.
The acquisition, announced this week, will allow more effective, more extensive distribution and support of high-quality Rhodius industrial abrasive products across the U.S., systematically expanding group market share.
Announcing the acquisition, Rhodius managing director Andreas Ehrler said that acquiring the new subsidiary was part of a long-term group growth strategy that has recently included intensive investment in sales offices and production facilities in the Middle East, Asia and South America, resulting in a current export share of 70 percent of total Rhodius production to more than 100 countries worldwide.
Operations in the U.S. will continue out of the recently completed premises in St Louis, MI, said Ehrler, where an under-roof area of more than 65,000 square feet was recently commissioned as a central point of contact for all U.S. customers, accommodating upgraded and professionalised centers for logistics and training as well as an advanced customer service department.
“The existing partnership enjoyed between management teams on two continents will continue to form the basis of close cooperation in the future,” Ehrler said.
"I believe this acquisition will allow us to bundle and further enhance our activities in the areas of logistics and branding.”
Prior to acquisition, the U.S.-based arm of Dutch headquartered Sundisc Abrasives was sole importer of Rhodius products for the North American market, a status earned in 2007 because of a successful focus on the distribution of abrasives for private-label customers in North America, Canada, Mexico and South America.
Mark Linn, vice president sales and marketing for Rhodius USA, explained that the incorporation of Sundisc’s Rhodius-branded business as a fully-fledged subsidiary would allow smoother, more effective transfer of products between the group’s European factories and customers in North America.
“Equally as important, it will also allow the more rapid communication to these factories of the unique needs of our USA customers,” Linn added.
“I believe that proximity to the customer, on-site customer care and regional adaptation of our products to local applications and special circumstances will continue to distinguish RHODIUS both nationally and internationally,” said Linn.
The acquisition of Sundisc’s branded operations by Rhodius USA became effective on Jan.1, 2017.
Rhodius USA Appoints VP of Sales & Marketing
Also on April 22, Rhodius USA announced the appointed of Mark Linn as vice-president sales & marketing.
The appointment, effective immediately and complementary to the acquisition by Rhodius USA of branded business managed by Sundisc Abrasives, brings with it Linn’s broad experience of relationship management across the distribution chain.
It will reinforce a drive to build the Rhodius brand throughout North America, where distribution of these high quality German products has until now been effected under private labels by Sundisc.
Linn, well known in the power tools industry for a focus on both sales and partnerships, culminated his 28-year career with Metabo by transferring to Sundisc Abrasives in mid‑2015, where he expanded the original sales team of 4 to 43, allowing both distributors and end users alike to benefit from the immediate, localized technical support associated with Rhodius worldwide.
Commenting on this expansion of the sales function, Linn said that sales strength was essential in order to combat a general lack of concern in the USA abrasives market for distributor support.
“Rhodius is approaching the market from a viewpoint of partnering with carefully selected distributors who can properly deliver our products to the end users,” Linn said. “We have refined our product mix so that we can address the need for both performance and profit at distributor level.”
The initial focus would be on the welding and industrial supply distributors, Linn noted.
“In the short term we intend to amplify the Rhodius brand through a national advertising campaign, as well as trade shows and local presentations, and I believe that our message of performance, protection and profit will be well received,” Linn predicted. “After earning a position in the distributor’s product portfolio, we will then expand our presence through market acceptance of our products, and deliver above average profits to our distributors, while supplying the end user with a high level of technical support.”
Linn said that a future phase would be Rhodius’ growth into the traditional, commercial construction arena through STAFDA distributors.