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British Industrial History

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Negretti Automation

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Negretti Automation of Aylesbury, part of Negretti and Zambra

1981 Losses worsened; Negretti and Zambra was taken over by Western Scientific Instruments.[1]

The original Negretti and Zambra Industrial Instrument business was renamed Negretti Automation Ltd.

1982 An industrial controls systems company based in Aylesbury

1982 Western Scientific acquire for Negretti Automation the Industrial Weighing Division of Fisher Controls which Fishers had acquired from GEC Elliott.

1985 After the takeover by Meggitt, the Automation business had only c.70 employees. Meggitt Executives admit that they did not realise that Negretti Automation existed. They were only interested in the Aviation business.

1985 Acquired the Rubber & Polymer Test products of SPRI (Sondes Place Research Institute) making "Mooney Viscometers" and other equipment and then Rotheroe and Mitchell Ltd. of Ruislip who manufactured air sampling equipment for Health & Safety at Work purposes, quite different activities from Negretti Automation’s Process Control and Weighing businesses.

1992 Meggitt sold Negretti Automation to its directors plus additional investment by a holding company Tuncove Ltd. The books show a price of £430,000. Part of the arrangement meant that the company was able to move from its expensive site in Stocklake, Aylesbury to two cheaper units in Bicester Road.

1996 The Environment Division was growing rapidly and needed more staff[2]

Jan 1997 Negretti Automation sold the remnants of the Diesel Engine Indicator and Thermocouple business to the Brearley Group of Sheffield.

1997 Negretti Automation sold the microprocess control and software business to two employees who registered a new company: Negretti Systems. Five other employees moved over to the new company. Shortly afterwards, the load cell part of the Weighing business was sold to Veccer. Also part of the remaining rubber and polymer test equipment business was sold.

1999 Negretti Automation sold the Environmental Monitoring business to Munro Group of Woodford Green, Essex for an estimated price of £450,000. Two employees transferred under TUPE, one of whom had worked for Negretti & Zambra for 43 years.

2000 Negretti Automation applied for a Company Voluntary Agreement (CVA) with debts of £1.5M of which £445K is owed to the pension fund. Major creditors refuse to accept the CVA and company goes into liquidation/

The name was changed to Zambra Ltd a few days before liquidation and a new company formed with the same name, Negretti Automation Ltd., thus the name Negretti Automation was apparently still free to trade without a debt showing. Liquidator sold the remnants of the weighing business to Procon Engineering/Defiant for undisclosed sum.

2000 Zambra Ltd (formerly Negretti Automation Limited) was wound up[3]

2009 Negretti Systems was forced to call in the receiver.



See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. The Times Jan 30, 1981
  2. The Times November 14, 1996
  3. London Gazette 6 June 2000
  • The Engineer 1982/01/28
  • [1] Negretti and Zambra story