(CLEVELAND, OH, USA and COVENTRY, ENGLAND December 1, 2016) ― Bear Diversified Inc. (Bear), its subsidiaries Northern Stamping (NSI) and Highlands Diversified Services (HDS), and Impression Technologies (ITL) announced that they recently entered into a strategic partnership to bring ITL’s patented Hot Form Quench (HFQ®) technology to North America.
ITL was incorporated in 2012 to commercialize an innovative and disruptive technology for the hot forming of high strength aluminum for complex geometries. The HFQ® technology arose out of extensive research at Imperial College London. HFQ® components are currently utilized on the platforms of 3 UK premium automotive manufacturers. In April 2016, ITL commissioned a new line, incorporating a hydraulic press with a solutionizing furnace, to allow production and demonstration of HFQ® components. ITL has exclusive rights to all the IP relating to HFQ® and has a strong pipeline of additional IP to further enhance HFQ®’s value proposition.
Bear is a privately-owned supplier of highly engineered structural products, including stamped components, complex welded assemblies, and electro-mechanical assemblies. It has facilities in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky and Mexico and is a major supplier to the global automotive, aerospace and satellite industries. NSI is leading the North American sales and manufacturing effort for HFQ®.
Jonathan Watkins, ITL’s Chief Executive Officer, stated, “ITL is now seeking to expand the commercialization of HFQ® within the global automotive, aerospace and certain other sectors where HFQ® will enable cost reduction, weight saving, increased strength, component integration and reduced tooling cost. To this end, ITL and Bear have entered into a close partnership and have several significant projects with leading North American OEMs under review.”
Matthew Friedman, CEO of Bear and its subsidiaries, said, “the Bear companies have a long-standing reputation for bringing new ideas and solutions to our customers. We are excited to build upon our history with this announcement as ITL’s preferred partner for the HFQ® technology in North America. This is a natural progression in Bear’s strategy to expand our product offerings and manufacturing and engineering expertise.”
Mr. Watkins added, “we look forward to ITL and Bear’s joint presentation of the HFQ® process and technology at the 4th Lightweight Vehicle Manufacturing Summit in Detroit, Michigan, USA on February 22-23, 2017. The two companies will be represented by their senior managers and technology experts to further explain the game-changing properties of HFQ®.”