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$3M robotics firm buys tool shop

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  • | 3:52 p.m. November 30, 2012
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  • Manatee-Sarasota
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SARASOTA — RND Automation & Engineering, a $3 million robotics and custom manufacturer, purchased the majority of the assets of Baytool Inc. a Bradenton-based machine shop.

Terms of the deal, announced in a press statement today, weren't released. But RND President Sean Dotson says the acquisition was an opportunity to own most of the company where it has been a client for several years. Baytool, which builds and reworks machines and equipment, is closing its business after more than 20 years, according to the release. “That would put a major strain on us,” Dotson told the Business Review today, “because we would have to find new vendors.”

Dotson instead bought the bulk of Baytool's machinery. It also hired two of its machinists.

The deal comes during a growth spurt for RND. The firm, now with nine employees, including the two from Baytool, designs and assembles custom-made automation and robotic machines used by other manufacturers. Clients include manufacturers of contact lenses, hydraulic valves and automotive sensors. Revenues will be around $3 million this year, says Dotson, up about 50% from 2011. He projects at least 30% growth in sales for 2013.

Dotson says clients that were previously undecided about going to automation in factories have been more likely to make big investments in recent months. “We are doing so much business we are overloaded,” Dotson says. “We are outgrowing our building.”


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