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Main entrance at the Pompes Guinard plant in Neuvy-Saint-Sépluchre near Châteauroux

Two French subsidiaries for KSB 

The acquisition of Pompes Guinard in 1986 is considered one of the most important takeovers in KSB’s history. The company, based in Courbevoie near Paris, is the largest French pump manufacturer at the time with 1450 employees and sales revenue of approximately one billion francs (€ 150,000 million). Both sides state that the acquisition marked a joining of forces on the international markets to face the growing competition from non-European countries. 

In 1986, Pompes Guinard has four plants, located in Châteauroux, Annecy, Neuvy-Saint-Sépulchre and Lille respectively, 16 sales offices and 300 sales agents. A year later, the French subsidiary KSB France with its plant in Déville-lès-Rouen and Pompes Salmson, which have also been acquired, merge to form the new company KSB Pompes Guinard with 1600 employees.

With the acquisition, French joins German as one of the main conference languages with the rule being to hold meetings in the respective national language.

KSB’s presence in France is completed in 1989 with the acquisition of AMRI S.A., the world’s second largest manufacturer of butterfly valves. Founded in 1959, the company employs around 7000 staff distributed over the production location in La Roche-Chalais, the research centre in Gradignan, the headquarters in Paris and a number of sales offices. The company also has a production facility in Burgos and a sales location in Madrid. 

In 1992, KSB S.A. merges the two French companies Pompes Guinard and AMRI.

Further activities in France

KSB opens its first sales office in France back in 1924. Production in the key French market starts in Paris in 1933 with the founding of Société Anonyme Klein (SAK). The small workshop is soon not enough to meet demand and, after relocating to a factory, the employees produce valves, steam traps and pumps. KSB loses the site after the Second World War. 

Founding the Paris sales office in 1951 marks the post-war beginnings in France, which is followed by the merger with Bréguet in 1957. While KSB adds the sales organisation to the joint venture, the French partner shares its pump factory in Déville-lès-Rouen.