21 Dec 2016
The commercial court of Besançon has declared in favour of the takeover of ISA FRANCE located in Villers-le-Lac in the Doubs region (North East of France) by AXON’ CABLE in its advisement issued on 21st December 2016. ISA France will join the Axon’ group on 1st January 2017 and will be renamed AXON’ NANOTEC SAS.
Located close to the Swiss border, ISA FRANCE was founded in 1984 following the takeover of the American watchmaker BULOVA. In 2016, the main shareholder of the 74-strong company was the Chinese manufacturer of watches and watch mechanisms CHUNG NAM which employs 10 000 people. CHUNG NAM was also ISA FRANCE’s main customer and represented 2/3 of the French company’s € 7.5 million turnover. To save money during the current watchmaking crisis, CHUNG NAM had stopped placing all orders on ISA France since September which has caused the company to file for bankruptcy on 5th October 2016.
A long-term partnership
AXON’ has been a long-term partner for ISA FRANCE. The small-sized company has manufactured shells for AXON’ space connectors for many years. ISA FRANCE has also designed machines for micro-assembling of space micro-D and nano-D connectors. AXON’ was very concerned by the risk that this supplier of strategic components could disappear. Consequently AXON’ prepared a takeover plan.
Several offers, one choice
About 10 companies, both in France and abroad, have been interested in the ISA FRANCE acquisition. But only two projects were presented to the Besançon commercial court on 14th December: one project by an expert in plastics micro injection, VP PLAST, a small to medium-sized company located next to Morteau - and the project presented by the expert in high tech cabling and interconnect solutions, AXON’ CABLE, located in Montmirail in the Champagne region. AXON’ plans to employ 45 out of the 74 employees. The non-selected staff will be able to apply for vacant positions within the AXON’ group and for the AxoCamp Programme which plans to train 12 software developers starting in February 2017.
Excellent technical and sales synergy
“Your high precision specialist”, is the motto of ISA FRANCE with over 32 years’ experience. Its original core business in the design and manufacture of miniature watch parts makes the company an expert in cutting, injection and assembling micro and nano-technologies. And this expertise in micro-technologies is particularly interesting for Axon’ as miniaturization is a key requirement of the space market in which AXON’ achieves a significant part of its turnover.
ISA FRANCE’s commercial department is quite small and was not a priority as 2/3 of its sales were achieved by the Chinese Mother company. ISA FRANCE will benefit from AXON’s international sales network with its 20 subsidiaries and 15 exclusive agents. A 2-day seminar is already planned at AXON’ NANOTEC in Villers-le-Lac in early January with about 30 of AXON’s technical and sales managers. The objective of this seminar is to prepare the promotion of AXON’ NANOTEC products and expertise for the next International Aerospace show in Bangalore in India from 14th to 18th February 2017 - the 3rd largest aerospace trade fair after Paris Air Show and Farnborough.
About Axon’ Cable
Axon’ Cable designs and manufactures cables, connectors and interconnect systems for high tech electronics. In 1965, the company employed 5 staff. Just over 50 years later, the Axon’ group numbers some 1900 staff and 20 subsidiaries worldwide. The group’s consolidated turnover amounts to €125 million (2016) of which 70 % is achieved through export.