Best Machinery Companies For 2014

In Conrad’s Utility Investor, income specialist Roger Conrad suggests that investors not get caught up in the hype around smartphone makers; rather, he looks to the telecom sector for better ways to play the growth of this market.

Roger Conrad: Joining us today is income investing expert, Roger Conrad, Editor of Conrad’s Utility Investor. How are you doing, Roger?

Roger Conrad: Real good, Steve.

Steve Halpern: You recently wrote a pretty controversial article that I’d like to go through regarding Apple (AAPL). You say Apple is a company that you like, but you wouldn’t necessarily be buying the stock and you don’t recommend it, either for growth, or income investors. Could you explain?

Roger Conrad: Well, you know, I think this is obviously a name that’s gotten a lot of press, and at one point, really got bid up to very high levels, and then of course became well-off earlier this year and that’s—we got interested in it at that point, but only, pretty much, for a contrarian kind of growth play.

Best Machinery Companies For 2014: Colfax Corp (CFX)

Colfax Corporation (Colfax) is a global industrial manufacturing and engineering company. The Company provides gas- and fluid-handling and fabrication technology products and services to commercial and governmental customers worldwide under the Howden and ESAB brand names and by Colfax Fluid Handling. Colfax’s products are marketed principally under the brand names Allweiler, Baric, Fairmount Automation, Houttuin, Imo, LSC, COT-Puritech, Portland Valve, Tushaco, Warren and Zenith. The Company has production facilities in Europe, North America and Asia. It offers customized fluid handling solutions to meet individual customer needs. In February 2011, the Company acquired Rosscor Holding B.V. In December 2011, it acquired COT-PURITECH. On January 13, 2012, Colfax acquired Charter International plc. In May 2012, the Company acquired 91% interest in Soldex S.A.

Pumps

Colfax manufactures rotary positive displacement pumps. Its rotary positive displ acement pumps consist of a casing containing screws, gears, vanes or similar components that are actuated by the relative rotation of that component to the casing, which results in the physical movement of the liquid from the inlet to the discharge at a constant rate.

Fluid Handling Systems

The Company manufactures fluid handling systems used primarily in the oil and gas, power generation, commercial marine and global defense markets. Colfax offers turnkey systems and support, including design, manufacture, installation, commission and service. Its systems include lubrication systems, which are used in rotating equipment in oil refineries and other process industries; custom designed packages used in crude oil pipeline applications; lubrication and fuel forwarding systems used in power generation turbines; packages for commercial marine engine rooms, and fire suppression systems for navy applications. Howden’s primary products are heavy-duty fan s, rotary heat exchangers and compressors. The fans and heat! exchangers are used in coal-fired power stations, both in combustion and emissions control applications, underground mines, steel sintering plants and other industrial facilities. It design, manufacture and distribute fluid-handling products that transfer or control liquids in a range of applications.

Specialty Valves

The Company’s specialty valves are used primarily in naval applications. Its valve business has specialized machining, welding and fabrication capabilities that enable the Company to serve as a contractor to the United States Navy. In addition to designing and manufacturing valves, Colfax also offers repair and retrofit services for products manufactured by other valve suppliers through its aftermarket support centers located in Portland, Maine and San Diego, California.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Holly LaFon]

    In the fourth quarter, he bought 32 new stocks. The largest new buys are: Air Lease (AL), Colfax (CFX) and Republic Bancorp Inc. (RBCAA).

    Air Lease (AL)

Best Machinery Companies For 2014: Kadant Inc (KAI)

Kadant Inc., incorporated in November 1991, is a supplier of equipment used in the global papermaking and paper recycling industries and a manufacturer of granules made from papermaking byproducts. Through its Papermaking Systems segment, the Company develops, manufactures and markets a range of equipment and products for the global papermaking, paper recycling, and process industries. Through its Fiber-based Products business, the Company manufacture and sell granules derived from pulp fiber for use as carriers for agricultural, home lawn and garden, and professional lawn, turf and ornamental applications, as well as for oil and grease absorption. Its Papermaking Systems segment consists of product lines, such as stock-preparation, fluid-handling, doctoring and water-management. On May 27, 2011, its subsidiary, Kadant Johnson Europe B.V., acquired all the interests in m-clean papertech holding AB. In April 2013, it completed the acquisition of Companhia Brasileira de Tecn ologia Industrial (CBTI).

The Company’s customer base includes major global paper manufacturers and with its equipment found in most of pulp and paper mills. The Company manufactures its products in nine countries in Europe, North and South America and Asia. It develop, manufacture and market complete custom-engineered systems and equipment, as well as standard individual components, for pulping, de-inking, screening, cleaning, and refining recycled and virgin fibers for preparation for entry into the paper machine. Its principal stock-preparation products include recycling and approach flow systems and Virgin pulping process equipment.

The Company develop, manufacture and market rotary joints, precision unions, steam and condensate systems, components, and controls used primarily in the dryer section of the papermaking process and during the production of corrugated boxboard, metals, plastics, rubber, textiles, chemicals and food. Its principal f luid-handling systems include rotary joints, siphons, turbul! ator bars, and engineered steam and condensate systems. Its mechanical devices, used with rotating shafts, allow the transfer of pressurized fluid from a stationary source into and out of rotating machinery for heating, cooling, or the transfer of fluid power. Its devices, installed primarily inside the rotating cylinders of paper machines, are used to remove condensate from the drying cylinders through rotary joints located on either end of the cylinder. Its steel or stainless steel axial bars, installed on the inside of cylinders, are used to induce turbulence in the condensate layer to improve the uniformity and rate of heat transfer through the cylinders. Its steam systems control the flow of steam from the boiler to the paper drying cylinders, collect condensed steam, and return it to the boiler to improve energy efficiency during the paper drying process.

The Company develop, manufacture and market a range of doctoring systems and related consumables that continuously clean rolls to keep paper machines running efficiently; doctor blades made of a variety of materials to perform functions, including cleaning, creping, web removal, flaking, and the application of coatings, and profiling systems that control moisture, Web curl, and gloss during paper converting. Its principal doctoring products include doctor systems and holders, profiling systems and doctor blades. Its doctor systems clean papermaking rolls to maintain the operation of paper machines and other equipment by placing a blade against the roll at a constant and uniform pressure. A doctor system consists of the structure supporting the blade and the blade holder. It offers profiling systems that control moisture, Web curl, and gloss during paper converting. It manufacture doctor and scraper blades made of a variety of materials, including metal, bi-metal, or synthetic materials that perform a variety of functions, including cleaning, creping, Web removal, flaking and the application of coatings.

The Company devel! ops, manu! facture and markets water-management systems and equipment used to continuously clean paper machine fabrics and rolls, drain water from pulp mixtures, form the sheet or Web, and filter the process water for reuse. Its principal water-management systems include shower and fabric-conditioning systems, formation systems, and water-filtration systems. Its shower and fabric-conditioning systems assist in the removal of contaminants that collect on paper machine fabrics used to convey the paper Web through the forming, pressing and drying sections of the paper machine. A typical paper machine has between 3 and 12 fabrics. It supplies structures that drain, purify, and recycle process water from the pulp mixture during paper sheet and Web formation. It offer a variety of filtration systems and strainers that remove contaminants from process water before reuse and recover reusable fiber for recycling back into the pulp mixture.

The Company competes with Voith Paper GmbH , Metso Corporation, Maschinenfabrik Andritz AG, Deublin Company, Barco Company, Christian Maier GmbH & Co. KG, Duff-Norton Company, Joh. Clouth GmbH & Co. KG, Bonetti, S.p.A., Metso Corporation and IBS-Paper Performance Group.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Calling all cash flows
    When you are trying to buy the market’s best stocks, it’s worth checking up on your companies’ free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That’s what we do with this series. Today, we’re checking in on Kadant (NYSE: KAI  ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.

Best Machinery Companies For 2014: Rexnord Corp (RXN)

Rexnord Corporation (Rexnord), incorporated on July 13, 2006, is a multi-platform industrial company. The Company comprises of two platforms, Process & Motion Control and Water Management. Rexnord’s Process & Motion Control product portfolio includes gears, couplings, industrial bearings, aerospace bearings and seals, FlatTop chain, engineered chain and conveying equipment, and are marketed and sold globally under brands, including Rexnord, Rex, Falk and Link-Belt. Its Water Management platform operates in the commercial construction market for water management products and the municipal water and wastewater treatment markets. Its Water Management product portfolio includes drainage products, flush valves and faucet products, backflow prevention pressure release valves, PEX piping and engineered valves and gates for the water and wastewater treatment markets. These products are marketed and sold through brand names, including Zurn, Wilkins, VAG, GA, Rodney-Hunt and Fonta ine. In August 2013, Rexnord Corp announced that it has acquired the assets of Micro Precision Gear Technology Limited. In December 2013, Rexnord acquired Precision Gear Holdings, LLC (PGH). PGH has two operating subsidiaries, Merit Gear LLC and Precision Gear LLC.

Process & Motion Control

The Company’s Process & Motion Control platform designs, manufactures, markets and services mechanical components used within complex systems. The Company sells its Process & Motion Control products into a diverse group of end markets, including mining, general industrial applications, cement and aggregates, agriculture, forest and wood products, petrochemical, energy, food and beverage, aerospace and wind energy. The Company is a manufacturer of gear drives and gear sets for the heavy duty industrial market. Its gear drives, service and gear sets are used in a number of heavy duty industries. These primary industries include the natural resource extraction, s teel, pulp and paper, chemical, forest and wood industries. ! Rexnord manufactures a range of heavy duty, medium and light duty gear drives used for bulk material handling, mixing, pumping and general gearing applications. It also operates a gear service and repair business through its Product Service group (Prager and Renew). Its Couplings are primarily used in high-speed, high-torque applications and are the interface between two shafts that permit power to be transmitted from one shaft to the other. Rexnord’s couplings are sold to a range of end markets, including the petrochemical and refining, wood processing, chemical, power generation and natural resources industries. Couplings comprise of the grid, flexible disc, elastomeric and gear product lines and are sold under the Steelflex, Thomas, Omega, Rex, Viva, Wrapflex, Lifelign, True Torque, Addax and Autogard brand names.

The Company primarily produces mounted bearings, which are offered in a range of specialized housings to suit specific industrial applications. Its FlatTop chain provides a continuous conveying surface that is critical to high-speed operations, such as those used to transport cans and bottles in beverage-filling operations, and is primarily sold to the food and beverage, consumer products, warehousing and distribution, and parts processing industries. The Company supplies its aerospace bearings and seals to the commercial aircraft, military aircraft and regional jet end markets for use in door systems, engine accessories, engine controls, engine mounts, flight control systems, gearboxes, landing gear and rotor pitch controls. Rexnord’s aerospace bearings and seals products consist of rolling element airframe bearings sold under the Shafer brand name, slotted-entry and split-ball sliding bearings sold under the PSI brand name and aerospace seals that are sold under the Cartriseal brand name, which are primarily sold for use in both aerospace and industrial applications.

The Company’s special compone nts products consist of three primary product lines: electri! c motor b! rakes, miniature Process & Motion Control components and security devices for utility companies. These products are manufactured by its businesses, such as Stearns, W.M. Berg and Highfield. Stearns’ products are used in a range of applications, including steel mills, oil field equipment, pulp processing equipment, large textile machines, rubber mills, metal forming machinery and dock and pier handling equipment. W.M. Berg sells its products to a range of markets, including aerospace, semiconductor, medical equipment, robotics, instrumentation, office equipment and satellite communications. Highfield’s products are sold to a range of markets, including electric, gas, water, telecommunications, utilities and plumbing and heating.

The Company’s conveying equipment and industrial chain products are used in various applications in a number of industries, including food and food processing, beverage and container, mining, construction and agricultural equipment , hydrocarbon processing and cement and aggregates processing. Its primary products include conveying equipment, engineered steel chain, and roller chain. Its conveying equipment product group provides design, assembly, installation and after-the-sale services primarily to the mining, cement and aggregates industries. Its products include engineered elevators, conveyors and components for medium to heavy duty material handling applications. The Company’s engineered steel chain products are sold under the Link-Belt and Rexnord brand names. These products are used in a number of applications, including cement elevators, construction and mining equipment and conveyors, and they are supplied to the cement and aggregates, energy, food and beverage, and forest and wood products industries.

Water Management

The Company’s Water Management platform designs, procures, manufactures and markets products that provide and enhance water quality, safety, flow control and conservation. The Water Management product port! folio inc! ludes professional grade specification drainage products, flush valves and faucet products, engineered valves and gates for the water and wastewater treatment market and PEX piping and are marketed and sold through brand names, including Zurn, Wilkins, VAG, GA, Rodney Hunt and Fontaine. Rexnord’s Water Management platform has a network of approximately 1,100 independent sales representatives across approximately 210 sales agencies in North America, who work with local engineers, contractors, builders and architects to specify its products for use in construction projects. Its water control and safety products are sold under the Wilkins brand name and encompass a variety of valves, including backflow preventers, fire system valves, pressure reducing valves and thermostatic mixing valves. These products are sold into the commercial and industrial construction applications, as well as the fire protection, waterworks and irrigation end markets.

Zurn’s commercia l brass products include manual and sensor operated flush valves marketed under the Aquaflush, AquaSense, AquaVantage and HydroVantage brand names and heavy duty commercial faucets marketed under the AquaSpec brand name. Water conserving fixtures are marketed under the EcoVantage and Zurn One brand names. These products are used in office buildings, schools, hospitals, airports, sports facilities, convention centers, shopping malls, restaurants and industrial production buildings. The Zurn One Systems integrate commercial brass and fixtures into plumbing systems. PEX is its product line manufactured out of cross-linked polyethylene into tubing and is suited for high temperature and pressure fluid distribution piping. Its PEX products include lines of pipe, fittings, valves and installation tools for both potable water and radiant heating systems. Its water and wastewater products are sold under the VAG, GA, Rodney Hunt and Fontaine brand names and are used to control the flo w of water and wastewater throughout the water cycle from ra! w water t! hrough collection, distribution and wastewater treatment. Products include automatic control valves, check valves, air valves, butterfly valves, water control gates, hydrants, actuation systems, and other specialized products for municipal, industrial, and hydropower applications. Its product lines are primarily sold into the water supply and treatment markets worldwide.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Each month, Credit Suisse’s small-cap strategists ask the firm’s analyst to name their favorite small- and mid-cap stocks. This month, six new stocks made the list: RPM International (RPM), SunCoke Energy (SXC), Zions Bancorp (ZION), Signature Bank (SBNY), Edwards Lifesciences (EW) and Rexnord (RXN).

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Rexnord (NYSE: RXN  ) reported earnings on May 21. Here are the numbers you need to know.

    The 10-second takeaway
    For the quarter ended March 31 (Q4), Rexnord met expectations on revenues and beat expectations on earnings per share.

Best Machinery Companies For 2014: IDEX Corp (IEX)

IDEX Corporation (IDEX), incorporated on September 24, 1987, is an applied solutions business that sells an array of pumps, flow meters and other fluidics systems and components and engineered products to customers in a variety of markets worldwide. All of the Company’s business activities are carried out through wholly owned subsidiaries. IDEX operates in three business segments: Fluid & Metering Technologies, Health & Science Technologies and Fire & Safety/Diversified Products. Reporting units in the Fluid & Metering Technologies segment consist of Banjo; Energy and Fuels (Energy); Chemical, Food & Process (CFP) and Water & Waste Water (Water). Reporting units in the Health & Science Technologies segment consist of IDEX Health & Science (IH&S); IDEX Optics and Photonics (IOP); Precision Polymer Engineering (PPE); Gast; Micropump and Materials Process Technologies (MPT). Reporting units in the Fire & Safety/Diversified Products segment consist of Fire Suppression; Rescu e Tools and Band-It. In July 20, 2012, it acquired Matcon Group Limited. In March 2013, it announced the acquisition of FTL Seals Technology, Ltd. On April 11, 2012, the Company acquired the stock of PPC. On April 30, 2012, the Company acquired the stock of ERC.

Fluid & Metering Technologies Segment

The Fluid & Metering Technologies Segment designs, produces and distributes displacement pumps, flow meters, injectors, and other fluid-handling pump modules and systems and provides flow monitoring and other services for the water and wastewater industries. Fluid & Metering Technologies pump and metering solutions serve a range of end markets, including industrial infrastructure (fossil fuels, refined and alternative fuels, and water and wastewater), chemical processing, agricultural, food and beverage, pulp and paper, transportation, plastics and resins, electronics and electrical, construction and mining, pharmaceutical and bio-pharmaceutical, machine ry and other markets. Fluid & Metering Technologies accounte! d for 43% of IDEX’s sales and 82% of IDEX’s operating income, with approximately 46% of its sales to customers outside the United States as of December 31, 2012, with approximately 46% of its sales to customers outside the United States. Banjo is a provider of pumps, valves, fittings and systems used in liquid handling. Banjo is based in Crawfordsville, Indiana and its products are used in agricultural and industrial applications. Approximately 11% of Banjo’s sales during 2012 were to customers outside the United States.

Energy consists of the Company’s Corken, Faure Herman, Liquid Controls, S.A.M.P.I. and Toptech businesses. Energy is a supplier of flow meters, electronic registration and control products, rotary vane and turbine pumps, reciprocating piston compressors, and terminal automation control systems. Energy has facilities in Longwood, Florida and Zwijndrech, Belgium (Toptech products), Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (Corken products), La Ferte Bernar d, France (Faure Herman products), Vadodara, Gujarat, India (Liquid Controls products), and Altopascio, Italy (S.A.M.P.I. products). Applications for Liquid Controls and S.A.M.P.I. positive displacement flow meters, electronic, registration and control products include mobile and stationary metering installations for wholesale and retail distribution of petroleum and liquefied petroleum gas, aviation refueling, and industrial metering and dispensing of liquids and gases. Corken products consist of rotary vane pumps, single and multistage regenerative turbine pumps, and small horsepower reciprocating piston compressors. Toptech supplies terminal automation hardware and software to control and manage inventories, as well as transactional data and invoicing, to customers in the oil, gas and refined-fuels markets. Faure Herman is a supplier of ultrasonic and helical turbine flow meters used in the custody transfer and control of fluids and gases. Approximately 53% of Energy’s sales during 2012 were to customers outside the United State! s.

!

CFP consists of the Company’s Richter, Viking and Warren Rupp businesses. CFP is a producer of air-operated and motor-driven double-diaphragm pumps and replacement parts, lined pumps, valves and control equipment for the chemical, fine chemical and pharmaceutical industries, and external gear pumps. Richter’s corrosion resistant fluoroplastic lined products offer solutions for applications in the process industry. Viking’s products consist of external gear pumps, strainers and reducers, and related controls used for transferring and metering thin and viscous liquids sold under the Viking and Wright Flow brands and air-operated double-diaphragm pumps sold under the Blagdon brand. Markets served by Viking products include chemical, petroleum, pulp and paper, plastics, paints, inks, tanker trucks, compressor, construction, food and beverage, personal care, pharmaceutical and biotech. Warren Rupp products (which also include Pumper Parts and Versa-Matic products) ar e used for abrasive and semisolid materials, as well as for applications where product degradation is a concern or where electricity is not available or should not be used. Markets served by Warren Rupp products include chemical, paint, food processing, electronics, construction, utilities, mining and industrial maintenance. CFP maintains operations in Kampen, Germany (Richter products), Cedar Falls, Iowa (Richter and Viking products), Eastbourne, East Sussex, England, Shannon, Ireland (Viking products) and Mansfield, Ohio (Warren Rupp products). CFP primarily uses independent distributors to market and sell its products. Approximately 54% of CFP’s sales during 2012 were to customers outside the United States.

Water consists of the Company’s ADS, IETG, iPEK, Knight and Pulsafeeder businesses. Water is a provider of metering technology and flow monitoring products and underground surveillance services for water and wastewater markets, as well as a manufacture r of pumps and dispensing equipment for industrial laundries! , commerc! ial dishwashing and chemical metering, and a provider of metering pumps, special-purpose rotary pumps, peristaltic pumps, fully integrated pump and metering systems, custom chemical-feed systems, electronic controls and dispensing equipment. ADS’s products and services provide integrated solutions that enable industry, municipalities and government agencies to analyze and measure the capacity, quality and integrity of wastewater collection systems, including the maintenance and construction of such systems. IETG’s products and services enable water companies to manage their water distribution and sewerage networks, while its surveillance service specializes in underground asset detection and mapping for utilities and other private companies. iPEK supplies remote controlled systems used for infrastructure inspection. Knight is a manufacturer of pumps and dispensing equipment for industrial laundries, commercial dishwashing and chemical metering. Pulsafeeder products are u sed to introduce precise amounts of fluids into processes to manage water quality and chemical composition, as well as peristaltic pumps. Its markets include water and wastewater treatment, oil and gas, power generation, pulp and paper, chemical and hydrocarbon processing, and swimming pools. Water maintains operations in Huntsville, Alabama and various other locations in the United States, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia and Melbourne, Victoria, Australia (ADS products), Leeds, England (IETG products and services), Hirschegg, Austria, and Sulzberg, Germany (iPEK products), Lake Forest, California, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, Eastbourne, East Sussex, England, Unanderra, Australia, and Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico (Knight products), Rochester, New York, Punta Gorda, Florida and Milan, Italy (Pulsafeeder products). Approximately 47% of Water’s sales during 2012 were to customers outside the United States.

Water Services & Technology (WST) consists of t he Company’s ADS, IETG and iPEK businesses. WST is a provi! der of me! tering technology and flow monitoring products and underground surveillance services for wastewater markets. ADS’s products and services provide integrated solutions that enable industry, municipalities and government agencies to analyze and measure the capacity, quality and integrity of wastewater collection systems, including the maintenance and construction of such systems. IETG’s products and services enable water companies to manage their water distribution and sewerage networks, while its surveillance service specializes in underground asset detection and mapping for utilities and other private companies. iPEK supplies remote controlled systems used for infrastructure inspection. WST maintains operations in Huntsville, Alabama and various other locations in the United States and Australia (ADS products and services); Leeds, England (IETG products and services); and Hirschegg, Austria, and Sulzberg, Germany (iPEK products). Approximately 40% of WST’s 2012 sales we re to customers outside the United States.

The Company competes with Pump Solutions Group, Dover Corporation, Milton Roy and Tuthill Corporation.

Health & Science Technologies Segment

The Health & Science Technologies Segment designs, produces and distributes a range of precision fluidics, rotary lobe pumps, centrifugal and positive displacement pumps, roll compaction and drying systems used in beverage, food processing, pharmaceutical and cosmetics, pneumatic components and sealing solutions, including pumping solutions required in analytical instrumentation, clinical diagnostics and drug discovery, molded and extruded, biocompatible medical devices and implantables, air compressors used in medical, dental and industrial applications, optical components and coatings for applications in the fields of scientific research, defense, aerospace, telecommunications and electronics manufacturing, laboratory and commercial equipment used in the production of micro and nano scale materials, precision pho! tonic sol! utions used in life sciences, research and defense markets, and precision gear and peristaltic pump technologies. The segment accounted for 35% of IDEX’s sales and 35% of operating income in 2012, with approximately 54% of its sales to customers outside the United States.

IH&S consists of Eastern Plastics, Rheodyne, Ismatec, Sapphire Engineering, Upchurch Scientific and ERC, which was acquired in April 2012. IH&S has facilities in Rohnert Park, California (Rheodyne products); Bristol, Connecticut (Eastern Plastics products); Wertheim-Mondfeld, Germany (Ismatec products); Middleboro, Massachusetts (Sapphire Engineering products); Oak Harbor, Washington (Ismatec and Upchurch Scientific products); and Kawaguchi, Japan (ERC products). Eastern Plastics products, which consist of high- precision integrated fluidics and associated engineered plastics solutions, are used in a set of end markets including medical diagnostics, analytical instrumentation, and laboratory automation. Rheodyne products consist of injectors, valves, fittings and accessories for the analytical instrumentation market. Rheodyne products are used by manufacturers of high pressure liquid chromatography equipment servicing the pharmaceutical, biotech, life science, food & beverage, and chemical markets. Ismatec products include peristaltic metering pumps, analytical process controllers, and sample preparation systems. Sapphire Engineering and Upchurch Scientific products consist of fluidic components and systems for the analytical, biotech and diagnostic instrumentation markets, such as fittings, precision-dispensing pumps and valves, tubing and integrated tubing assemblies, filter sensors and other micro-fluidic and nano-fluidic components, as well as advanced column hardware and accessories for the high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) market. Sapphire Engineering and Upchurch Scientific products primarily serve the pharmaceutical, drug discovery, chemical, biochemical processing, genomics/proteomics research, envir! onmental ! labs, food/agriculture, medical lab, personal care, and plastics/polymer/rubber production markets. ERC manufactures gas liquid separations and detection solutions for the life science, analytical instrumentation and clinical chemistry markets. ERC’s products consist of in-line membrane vacuum degassing solutions, refractive index detectors and ozone generation systems. Approximately 52% of IH&S’s 2012 sales were to customers outside the United States.

IOP consists of CVI Melles Griot (CVI MG), Semrock and AT Films (the Precision Photonics portion of the AT Films business was acquired in April 2012). CVI MG is a into design and manufacture of precision photonic solutions used in the life sciences, research, semiconductor, security and defense markets. CVI MG’s products are focused on the generation, control and productive use of light for a variety of key science and industrial applications. Products consist of specialty lasers and light sources, electro-o ptical components, specialty shutters, opto-mechanical assemblies and components. In addition, CVI MG produces critical components for life science research, electronics manufacturing, military and other industrial applications including lenses, mirrors, filters and polarizers. These components are utilized in a number of applications such as spectroscopy, cytometry (cell counting), guidance systems for target designation, remote sensing, menology and optical lithography.

CVI MG is headquartered in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with additional manufacturing sites located in Carlsbad, California; Rochester, New York; Isle of Man, British Isles; Leicester, England; Kyongki-Do, Korea; Tokyo, Japan; Didam, The Netherlands; and Singapore. Semrock is a provider of optical filters for biotech and analytical instrumentation in the life sciences markets. Semrock’s optical filters are produced using state-of-the-art manufacturing processes which enable it to offer its custo mers improvements in instrument performance and reliability.! Semrock ! is located in Rochester, New York. AT Films specializes in optical components and coatings for applications in the fields of scientific research, defense, aerospace, telecommunications and electronics manufacturing. The Precision Photonics portion of its business specializes in optical components and coatings for applications in the fields of scientific research, aerospace, telecommunications and electronics manufacturing. AT Films is headquartered in Boulder, Colorado. Approximately 57% of IOP’s 2012 sales were to customers outside the United Sates.

Containment consists of Precision Polymer Engineering (PPE). PPE, which is located in Blackburn, England, is a provider of high performance seals and advanced sealing solutions for a diverse range of global industries and applications, including hazardous duty, analytical instrumentation, semiconductor/solar, process technologies, pharmaceutical, electronics, and food applications. Approximately 79% of PPE’s 20 12 sales were to customers outside the United States.

Gast consists of the Company’s Gast and Jun-Air businesses. The Gast business is a manufacturer of air-moving products, including air motors, low-range and medium-range vacuum pumps, vacuum generators, regenerative blowers and fractional horsepower compressors. Gast products are used in a variety of long-life applications requiring a quiet, clean source of moderate vacuum or pressure. Gast products primarily serve the medical equipment, environmental equipment, computers and electronics, printing machinery, paint mixing machinery, packaging machinery, graphic arts, and industrial manufacturing markets. The Jun-Air business is a provider of low-decibel, ultra-quiet vacuum compressors suitable for medical, dental and laboratory applications. Based in Benton Harbor, Michigan, Gast also has a logistics and commercial center in Redditch, England. Approximately 27% of Gast’s 2012 sales were to customers outsid e the United States.

Micropump, headquartered i! n Vancouv! er, Washington, produces, precision-engineered, magnetically and electromagnetically driven rotary gear, piston and centrifugal pumps. Micropump products are used in low-flow abrasive and corrosive applications. Micropump products primarily serve the printing machinery, medical equipment, paints and inks, chemical processing, pharmaceutical, refining, laboratory, electronics, pulp and paper, water treatment, textiles, peristaltic metering pumps, analytical process controllers and sample preparation systems markets. Approximately 77% of Micropump’s 2012 sales were to customers outside the United States.

MPT consists of Quadro, Fitzpatrick, Microfluidics and Matcon Group Limited (Matcon), which was acquired in July 2012. Quadro is a provider of particle control solutions for the pharmaceutical and bio-pharmaceutical markets. Based in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, Quadro’s activities include fine milling, emulsification and special handling of liquid and solid pa rticulates for laboratory, pilot phase and production scale processing within the pharmaceutical and bio-pharmaceutical markets. Fitzpatrick is into the design and manufacture of process technologies for the pharmaceutical, food and personal care markets. Fitzpatrick designs and manufactures customized size reduction, roll compaction and drying systems to support their customers’ product development and manufacturing processes. Fitzpatrick is headquartered in Elmhurst, Illinois. Microfluidics is into designing and manufacturing of laboratory and commercial equipment used in the production of micro and nano scale materials for the pharmaceutical and chemical markets. Microfluidics is the producer of the Microfluidizer family of high shear fluid processors for uniform particle size reduction, robust cell disruption and nanoparticle creation. Microfluidics has offices in Newton, Massachusetts. Matcon is into material processing solutions for high value powders used in the man ufacture of pharmaceuticals, food, plastics, and fine chemic! als.

!

Matcon’s products consist of the original cone valve powder discharge system and filling, mixing and packaging systems, all of which support its customers’ automation and process requirements. Matcon is located in Evesham, Worcestershire, England. Approximately 61% of MPT’s 2012 sales were to customers outside the United States.

The Company competes with Gardner Denver, Inc., Thermo Scientific Dionex, Gooch & Housego PLC, Parker Hannifin and Valco Instruments Co., Inc.

Fire & Safety/Diversified Products Segment

The Fire & Safety/Diversified Products segment produces firefighting pumps and controls, rescue tools, lifting bags and other components and systems for the fire and rescue industry, engineered stainless steel banding and clamping devices used in a variety of industrial and commercial applications, and precision equipment for dispensing, metering and mixing colorants and paints used in a variety of retail and com mercial businesses around the world. The segment accounted for 22% of IDEX’s sales and 53% of IDEX’s operating income in 2012, with approximately 56% of its sales to customers outside the United States.

Fire Suppression consists of the Company’s Class I, Hale and Godiva businesses, which produce truck-mounted and portable fire pumps, stainless steel valves, foam and compressed air foam systems, pump modules and pump kits, electronic controls and information systems, conventional and networked electrical systems, and mechanical components for the fire, rescue and specialty vehicle markets. Fire Suppression’s customers are primarily OEMs. Fire Suppression is headquartered in Ocala, Florida (Class 1 and Hale products), with additional facilities located in Warwick, England (Godiva products). Approximately 41% of Fire Suppression’s 2012 sales were to customers outside the United States.

Rescue consists of the Company’s Dinglee, Hurst Jaws o f Life, Lukas and Vetter businesses, which produce hydraulic! , battery! , gas and electric-operated rescue equipment, hydraulic re-railing equipment, hydraulic tools for industrial applications, recycling cutters, pneumatic lifting and sealing bags for vehicle and aircraft rescue, environmental protection and disaster control, and shoring equipment for vehicular or structural collapse. Rescue Tool’s customers are primarily public and private fire and rescue organizations. Rescue has facilities in Shelby, North Carolina (Hurst Jaws of Life products); Tianjin, China (Dinglee products); Erlangen, Germany (Lukas products); and Zulpich, Germany (Vetter products). Approximately 75% of Rescue’s 2012 sales were to customers outside the United States.

Band-It is a producer of stainless steel banding, buckles and clamping systems. Band-It products are used for securing exhaust system heat and sound shields, industrial hose fittings, traffic signs and signals, electrical cable shielding, identification and bundling, and in numerous other industrial and commercial applications. Band-It products primarily serve the automotive, transportation equipment, oil and gas, general industrial maintenance, electronics, electrical, communications, aerospace, utility, municipal and subsea marine markets. Band-It is based in Denver, Colorado, with additional operations in Staveley, Derbyshire, England, and a IDEX shared manufacturing facility in China. Approximately 39% of Band-It’s 2012 sales were to customers outside the United States.

Dispensing Equipment produces precision equipment for dispensing, metering and mixing colorants and paints used in a variety of retail and commercial businesses worldwide. Dispensing Equipment is a global supplier of precision-designed tinting, mixing, dispensing and measuring equipment for auto refinishing and architectural paints. Dispensing Equipment products are used in retail and commercial stores, hardware stores, home centers, department stores, automotive body shops as well as point-of-purchase dispensers. Dispensing Equipmen! t is head! quartered in Wheeling, Illinois with additional facilities in Sassenheim, The Netherlands; Unanderra, Australia; and Milan, Italy, as well as IDEX shared manufacturing facilities in India and China. Approximately 59% of Dispensing Equipment’s 2012 sales were to customers outside the United States.

The Company competes with American Cast Iron Pipe Company, Holmatro, Inc., Nordic Capital and Panduit Corporation.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Xylem’s big day has also boosted other water-infrastructure stocks. Flowserve (FLS) has gained 1.2% to $70.59, Idex Corp. (IEX) has risen 0.5% to $68.69 and Thermo Fisher Scientific (TMO) has advanced 0.4% t0 $98.22.

  • [By Rich Duprey]

    Diversified technology machinist IDEX (NYSE: IEX  ) announced yesterday its second-quarter dividend of $0.23 per share, the same rate it paid last quarter after raising the payout 15% from $0.20 per share.

Best Machinery Companies For 2014: Katy Industries Inc (KATY)

Katy Industries, Inc. (Katy) is a manufacturer, importer and distributor of commercial cleaning and storage products. The Company’s commercial cleaning products are sold primarily to janitorial/sanitary and foodservice distributors that supply end users, such as restaurants, hotels, healthcare facilities and schools. The Company’s storage products are primarily sold through home improvement and mass market retail outlets. Continental Commercial Products, LLC (CCP) is its wholly owned subsidiary and includes as divisions all of its business units. The Company’s business units are Continental, Contico, Container, Gemtex, Glit and Wilen. On October 4, 2011, the Company sold all assets and certain liabilities related to the DISCO division of CCP to DISCO Acquisition Corp. In February 2014, Katy Industries Inc completed the acquisition of Fort Wayne Plastics, Inc.

The Continental business unit is a plastics manufacturer and an importer and distributor of prod ucts for the commercial janitorial/sanitary maintenance, industrial and food service markets. Continental products include commercial waste receptacles, buckets, mop wringers, janitorial carts, and other products designed for commercial cleaning and food service. Continental products are sold under the brand names, such as Continental, Kleen Aire, Huskee, SuperKan, King Kan, Unibody, Tilt-N-Wheel, Wall Hugger, Collossus, Corner’ Round, Rountop, Swingline, Kleen Tech and Structo Tuff.

The Contico business unit is a plastics manufacturer and distributor of home and tool storage products, sold primarily through home improvement and mass market retail outlets. Contico products include plastic home storage units, such as domestic storage containers, tool boxes, shelving and hard plastic gun cases and are sold under the brand names Contico and Tuffbin. Contico is a registered trademark used under license from Contico Manufacturing Limited.

The Contain er business unit is a plastics manufacturer and distributor ! of industrial storage drums and pails for commercial and industrial use. Products are sold under the Contico and Contico Container brand names.

The Gemtex business unit is a manufacturer and distributor of resin fiber disks and other coated abrasives for the original equipment manufacturer (OEM), automotive, industrial and home improvement markets. Gemtex products are sold under the brand names Trim-Kut and Grind R.

The Glit business unit is a manufacturer and distributor of non-woven abrasive products for commercial and industrial use and also supplies materials to various OEMs. Glit non-woven products include floor maintenance pads, hand pads, scouring pads, specialty abrasives for cleaning and finishing, growth medium and roof ventilation products. These products are sold primarily in the commercial sanitary maintenance, food service, industrial and construction markets under the brand names, such as Glit, Kleenfast, Glit/Microtron, Fiber Natural s, Blue Ice, Brillo, Cyclone, Cyclone D, Sponge Pro, Wipe Clean Pro, Joey, Jackeroo, Buckaroo, Cocopad, Safire and WalnutPad. Brillo is a registered trademark used under license from Armaly Brands, Inc. and BAB-O is a registered trademark used under license from Fitzpatrick Bros., Inc.

The Wilen business unit is a manufacturer, importer and distributor of professional cleaning products that include mops, brooms, brushes and plastic cleaning accessories. Wilen products are sold primarily through commercial sanitary maintenance, industrial and food service markets, with some products sold through consumer retail outlets. Products are sold under the brand names, such as Wilen, Wax-o-matic, Rototech, ErgoWorx and Derma-Tek.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Chris Mydlo]

    The guru, Mario Gabelli, purchased 724,729 shares of Katy Industries (KATY). According to the 13D filed with the SEC on March 21, 2014, Gabelli is deemed to have beneficial ownership of the securities owned by Gabelli Funds, GAMCO, Teton Advisors and MJG Associates. The total amount of shares owned is 1,711,045, representing 21.52% of the shares outstanding. Katy engages in the manufacture, import and distribution of commercial cleaning and storage products for commercial janitorial/sanitary maintenance, industrial, foodservice, mass merchant retail and home improvement markets in the U.S., Canada and Europe.

Best Machinery Companies For 2014: Xylem Inc (XYL)

Xylem Inc. (Xylem), formerly ITT WCO, Inc., incorporated on May 4, 2011, is a provider of equipment and service for water and wastewater applications with a portfolio of products and services addressing the full cycle of water, from collection, distribution and use to the return of water to the environment. It operates in two segments: Water Infrastructure and Applied Water. The Water Infrastructure segment focuses on the transportation, treatment and testing of water, offering a range of products, including water and wastewater pumps, treatment and testing equipment, and controls and systems. Key brands in this segment include Flygt, Wedeco, Godwin Pumps, WTW, Sanitaire, AADI and Leopold. The Applied Water segment encompasses the uses of water and focuses on the residential, commercial, industrial and agricultural markets. The segment’s products include pumps, valves, heat exchangers, controls and dispensing equipment. Key brands in this segment include Goulds Water Tec hnology (Goulds), Bell & Gossett, AC Fire, Standard, Flojet, Lowara, Jabsco and Flowtronex. The Company sells its products in more than 150 countries through a distribution network consisting of its direct sales force and independent channel partners. On October 31, 2011, ITT Corporation completed Spin-off of Xylem, formerly ITT’s water equipment and services businesses. The Spin-off was completed pursuant to the Distribution Agreement, dated as of October 25, 2011, among ITT, Exelis Inc. (Exelis) and Xylem. In July 2012, it acquired MJK Automation A/S. In March 2013, it acquired MultiTrode Pty Ltd.

Water Infrastructure

Water Infrastructure involves the process that collects water from a source and distributes it to users, and then returns the wastewater to the environment. Water Infrastructure serves three applications: transport, treatment and test of water and wastewater for two types of customers: public utilities and industrial facilities. T he Transport application includes all of the equipment and s! ervices involved in the movement of water from sources, such as oceans, lakes, rivers and ground water, to treatment facilities, and then to users. It also includes the movement of wastewater from the point of use to a treatment facility and then back into the environment. The Company serves the equipment markets, such as water and wastewater submersible pumps, monitoring controls, and application solutions. With operations on six continents, it also has dewatering rental fleet, serviced with the Company’s Flygt and Godwin brands. In its Water Infrastructure Segment, Transport accounted for approximately 73% of its consolidated revenue during the year ended December 31, 2011. Flygt is the manufacturer of submersible pumps, mixers, and aeration equipment for use in environments, such as water and wastewater treatment, raw water supply, abrasive or contaminated industrial processes, mining and crop irrigation. Flygt products have applications in various markets, including wa stewater lift stations, water and wastewater treatment facilities, pressurized sewage systems, oil and gas, steel, mining and leisure markets. Customers include public utility wastewater and clean water treatment facilities, oil and gas platforms, and steel manufacturing companies.

Godwin Pumps is engaged in pump manufacturing. It manufactures, sells, rents and services products that are customized to the specific needs of its clients. Godwin Pumps’ products include the fully automatic self-priming Dri-Prime pump, a range of Sub-Prime electric and Heidra hydraulic submersible pumps, Wet-Prime gasoline-powered contractor pumps and a line of generators and portable light towers. Godwin products are primarily used in construction, disaster recovery, flooding, heavy industry, marine use, mining, oil, gas and chemical extraction, refineries, temporary fire protection and water and wastewater transport. Customers include industrial plants, construction contractors, public utility wastewaters and clean water treatment and tr! ansportat! ion facilities, oil, gas and chemical drilling outfits, and refineries. Godwin’s fleet of equipment is rented through 33 United States branches and a global network of distributors. The Treatment application includes equipment and services that treat both water for consumption and wastewater to be returned to the environment. Leopold is the Company’s filtration brand. Disinfection systems, both ultraviolet (UV) and ozone oxidation, treat both public utility drinking water and wastewater, as well as industrial process water, and are provided through its WEDECO brand. Biological treatment systems are key to the treatment of solids in wastewater plants, which is provided through its Sanitaire brand. In its Water Infrastructure Segment, Treatment accounted for approximately 18% of its consolidated net sales in 2011.

The Company’s Sanitaire brand provides biological wastewater treatment solutions for public utility and industrial applications. Sanitaire’s of fering includes diffused aeration, sequencing batch reactors, drum filters and state-of-the-art controls. Sanitaire is a brand in diffused aeration, which is a process that introduces air into a liquid, providing an aerobic environment for degradation of organic matter. Principal Sanitaire customers are public utility and industrial wastewater treatment facilities. WEDECO develops chemical-free and environmentally friendly water treatment technologies, including ultraviolet light and ozone systems. There are over 250,000 installed WEDECO systems for UV disinfection and ozone oxidation globally in private, public utility and industrial locations. Customers include public utility wastewater and clean water treatment facilities, power plants, pulp and paper mills, food products manufacturers and aquaculture facilities. Leopold is a gravity media filtration and clarification solutions for the water and wastewater industry. Nova Analytics, its served market is focused on water an d the environment for quality levels throughout the water in! frastruct! ure loop.. Analytical systems are applied in three primary ways: in the field, in a facility laboratory, or real time, online monitoring in a treatment facility process. In its Water Infrastructure Segment, Test accounted for approximately 9% of its consolidated net sales in 2011.

In wastewater treatment facilities, WTW-branded systems monitor parameters, such as dissolved oxygen, pH, and turbidity throughout the water process. WTW’s product offering includes meters, sensors, data-loggers, photometers and software. Aanderaa Data Instruments AS (AADI) offers sensors, instruments and systems for measuring and monitoring in environments, such as rivers, oceans and the polar regions through networked systems using wireless technology that monitors temperature, salinity, oxygen, turbidity, current and waves for ecosystem health. The main market areas are marine transportation, environmental and ocean research, oil and gas, aquaculture, road and traffic, and constr uction. Oceanography International Corporation (OI Analytical) provides products used for chemical analysis. The Company develops, manufactures, sells, and services analytical instruments that detect, measure, analyze, and monitor chemicals in liquids, solids, and gases. Yellow Springs Instrument Company (YSI) develops and manufactures sensors, instruments, software and data collection platforms for environmental and coastal water quality monitoring and testing. YSI also offers life sciences products, including biochemical analyzers for bioprocess monitoring, food and beverage processing, and sports physiology. The main market areas are marine transportation, environmental and ocean research, oil and gas, aquaculture, road and traffic, and construction.

Applied Water

Applied Water encompasses all the uses of water. Its served market consists of the main uses of global water: Building Services, Industrial Water and Irrigation. The Building Services is defined by four main uses of water in building services ! applicatio! ns, such as in residential homes and commercial buildings, including offices, hotels, restaurants and malls. The first is the supply of potable water for consumption, such as for drinking and hygiene. The Goulds brand offers pumps and boosting systems utilized within buildings, sourcing water from distribution networks or from wells. The second application is wastewater removal with sump and sewage pumps. The third application is in heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), where Bell & Gossett specializes in pumps and valves that are used in water-based heating and cooling systems. The fourth water-related building service area is fire protection, where its AC Fire brand supplies full pump systems for emergency fire suppression. In Europe, Lowara is a brand in the commercial and residential water market with applications in the four main uses of water. In its Applied Water Segment, Building Services accounted for approximately 51% of its consolidated net sales in 20 11.

The Company’s Goulds brand supplies vertical multistage pumps to boost pressure for purposes , such as circulating water through a manufacturing facility to cool machine tools. Its Lowara brand focuses on water treatment, industrial washing equipment and machine tool cooling. The Standard brand delivers heat exchangers for combined heat and power (CHP) applications within power generation plants. It also provides applications, such as flexible impeller pumps for wine processing facilities served by its Jabsco brand, and water-based detergent dispensing and water circulation within car washes served by Flojet and Goulds air-operated diaphragm and end suction pumps. In its Applied Water Segment, Industrial Water accounted for approximately 42% of its consolidated net sales in 2011. The irrigation business consists of irrigation-related equipment and services associated with bringing water from a source to the plant or livestock need, including hoses, sprink lers, center pivot and drip irrigation. The Company focuses ! on the pu! mps and boosting systems that supply this ancillary equipment with water. Its Goulds brand brings mixed flow pumps, and its Flowtronex group specializes in equipment solutions, such as the Hydrovar boosting system, which incorporates monitoring and controls. Its Lowara brand also produces pumps for agriculture applications and irrigation of gardens and parks. In its Applied Water Segment, Irrigation accounted for approximately 7% of the Company’s consolidated net sales in 2011.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Aaron Levitt]

    Spun-off from industrial giant ITT (ITT) a few years ago, Xylem (XYL) could be a great starting point for investors looking at water stocks. Aside from its cool and appropriate name, XYL provides host of equipment — pumps, controllers and filtration devices — for wastewater treatment plants across the globe.

  • [By Marc Bastow]

    Water and waste-water systems provider Xylem (XYL) raised its quarterly dividend 10% to 12.8 cents per share, payable on Mar. 19 to shareholders of record as of Feb. 19.
    XYL Dividend Yield: 1.39%

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Stocks received a respite from the selling today as Michael Kors (KORS), Yum Brands (YUM), Merck (MRK), Pfizer (PFE) and Xylem (XYL) gained.

Best Machinery Companies For 2014: Danieli & C Officine Meccaniche SpA (DAS)

Danieli & C Officine Meccaniche SpA is an Italy-based company primarily engaged in industrial sector. The Company designs, manufactures, sales and makes installation of machines and plants for the metallurgical industry. The Company’s portfolio includes mines; pellet production plants; blast furnaces; direct reduction equipment; machinery for the treatment of scrap metal; steelworks for production of liquid steel; continuous casting machinery for blooms, billets and slabs; rolling mills for long products, seamless tubes and flat products; production lines for welded tubes and flat products; plants for secondary processing, such as peeling, rolling and drawing; forging presses and manipulators; extrusion presses for ferrous and non-ferrous metals; plants for longitudinal and transversal cutting; automation and control systems, and cranes and lifting equipment. It is also active in the production and sale of special steel for automotive, machine tools and railway industry, amon g others. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By GURUFOCUS]

    EMC’s products – both hardware and software – are litearlly a geek’s wonderland alphabet soup, which include Storage Area Network (SAN), Network Attached Storage (NAS), Direct Attached Storage (DAS), Virtual SAN, All-Flash XtremIO, Atmos, Avamar,  Data Domain, Isilon, Pivotal, ViPR Software Defined Storgae, VMAX, VNX, VNXe, VPLEX, VSPEX (none of these are typos).  Information storage makes up 70% of revenues and virtualization 23% of revenues.  Products generate 55% of revenues.  Services generate 45% of revenues.  The Company’s gross profit split is approximaltey 67% data storage and 31% virtualization.