Manufacturer Gardner Denver about to be sold

Industrial pump manufacturer Gardner Denver, which operates a factory in Tipton, is being sold to a New York-based private equity firm in a $3.9-billion deal.

Representatives from Gardner Denver and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., the firm purchasing the manufacturer, did not return calls Friday seeking comment on the future of the Tipton plant.

The 70,000-square-foot, $15 million plant opened in May. Officials expected it to employ 40 within three years to assemble and repair pump parts used in Marcellus Shale drilling and the hydraulic fracturing process used to access natural gas.

In a news release issued Friday, representatives from both companies hailed Gardner Denver’s success and expressed an interest in increasing its value.

“The long-term future of Gardner Denver is bright,” KKR executive Pete Stavros said in the release.

Gardner Denver officials said in October that they would review their “strategic options,” possibly including a total or partial sale, The Associated Press reported.

Gardner Denver stock rose amid media reports that the private equity firm was bidding for the company, AP reported.

The acquisition has yet to be approved by Gardner Denver’s shareholders, KKR officials said in a statement.

KKR owns global assets valued at more than $75 billion last year, according to its corporate website.