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American paint supplier buys Brown Brothers

American refinish paint supplier PPG Industries has bought Unipart’s bodyshop distribution business Brown Brothers in the UK for an undisclosed sum.

Brown Brothers will function as a subsidiary of PPG from February.

The acquisition gives PPG, which also sells products under the Nexa and Max Meyer brands, national distribution coverage which it hopes will help boost its market share.

For Unipart, the sale allows a closer focus on its core parts supply business following the results of a strategic review last year.

PPG claims it has no plans to stop selling rival paint products at Brown Brothers’ 34 branches, because of its importance to the business.

The company will continue its relationships with third party distributors, and does not intend to open or close any branches in the near future, though it will be looking out for any holes in its network. (Unipart is continuing with plans to open and close two to three sites before PPG takes over).

PPG senior vice-president J Rich Alexander said: “We are continuing to accelerate our profitable growth in coatings by making strategic acquisitions, such as this one in the UK, which is an important market.”

Unipart will retain SSVG, which supplies independently manufactured crash repair parts, though these will not be sold through the Brown Brothers network.

The company has trialled direct distribution through its workshop branches, and plans to roll this out following completion of the sale.

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