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In brief

01 December, 2003

• The gear and drives supplier, Bonfiglioli Riduttori, has bought another Italian gear-maker, Tecnoingranaggi, which specialises in low-backlash planetary and bevel-planetary gears for servo applications. The Bologna-based acquisition employs 30 people and has an annual turnover of €6m.

• The machine vision specialist Cognex has bought Gavitec AG of Aachen, Germany, for an undisclosed cash sum. Gavitec, founded in 1997, produces vision products for the fast-growing direct part mark reading (or "industrial ID") market, with most of its sales in Germany. The acquisition will strengthen Cognex`s German presence.

GSI Lumonics has bought Westwind Air Bearings from Cobham plc for £21.25m. Westwind makes precision rotary motion components, based on a proprietary air bearing spindle technology. Its sales in 2002 were £15m and it employs 350 people, mainly in Poole, Dorset, and at a site in China.

• The automation and materials-handling specialist Wittmann is building a factory in China which it expects to produce 300 linear robots a year when it comes on stream in September 2004. Wittmann is initially investing about $3m in the factory in Kunshan, near Shanghai.

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