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Lighting systems firm switches on acquisition plans

Reed Automotive, the specialist designer and manufacturer of automotive exterior lighting systems, is restructuring its business in preparation for a major growth drive.

The £3m turnover company, which counts Ford, Land Rover, MG Rover and Unipart among its customers, is planning to boost revenues to £12m over the next three to five years largely through consolidated acquisitions.

It is also focusing on vertical integration - the first step could be the purchase of an injection mouldings company - to expand capabilities in its core activities. Chairman and founder Brian Reed is stepping back from the chief executive's role to focus on the company's growth strategy over the next three to five years.

Jeremy Farrow becomes chief executive, tasked with driving forward the group's operations, which will include strengthening relationships with existing carmaker partners. He rejoins the company after management stints at several automotive related organisations.

Reed has also reassessed the finance director's role to concentrate on acquisitions. “It is going to be necessary, over the next five years, to create a relevant critical mass to maximise the group's future options and potential,” he says. “I'm confident the newly structured team will be capable of producing such a result.”

Reed is currently reviewing the aftersales operation, described as a “nominal” part of the business. Options include spinning off the division or maintaining it as a separate company, but Reed says it has “substantial potential” for growth, and might look to form a partnership with an existing aftermarket supplier.

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