Modine exploring alternatives for automotive business

Business accounts for 25 percent of revenue

Brian Agen (l) and Peggy Kelsey (c) hold a new Modine flag as Tom Burke (r) addresses employees at the corporate headquarters in Racine, WI. The event kicked off the recognition celebration of Modine's 100th Anniversary. Copyright 2016, Gregory Shaver, The Journal Times. (PRNewsFoto/Modine Manufacturing Company)

Racine-based Modine Manufacturing Co. is exploring strategic alternatives for its automotive business, the company’s largest single end-market at 25 percent.

Brian Agen (r) and Peggy Kelsey (c) hold a new Modine flag as Tom Burke (l) addresses employees at the corporate headquarters in Racine, WI. The event kicked off the recognition celebration of Modine’s 100th Anniversary. Copyright 2016, Gregory Shaver, The Journal Times. (PRNewsFoto/Modine Manufacturing Company)

Modine’s automotive business provides cooling products like radiators, condensers and chillers and cooling plates for battery thermal management. Customers include automobiles, light truck, motorcycle and power sport vehicle and engine manufactures.

The company has been actively involved in developing products for alternative powertrains like electric, hybrid and fuel cell vehicles. The market accounted for $526 million of Modine’s $2.1 billion in revenue in fiscal 2018.

Other vehicular markets, including commercial vehicles and off-highway, account for $714.8 million in revenue during the last fiscal year.

Modine also acquired Luvata Heat Transfer Solutions in 2016, a move intended to help the company diversify away from vehicle businesses. The deal was a major component of Modine’s strengthen, diversify and grow strategy.

“While I’m extremely proud of the great work the team has done to position our Automotive business as a market leader in key product lines which have delivered strong growth, the automotive market has very different dynamics than the other portions of our (vehicular thermal solutions) portfolio and the balance of our industrial business,” said Tom Burke, president and chief executive officer of Modine.

The company plans to complete its review “over the next several quarters” and noted there’s no guarantee any action will be taken.

Modine does not have any automotive production facilities in Wisconsin. The number of automotive employees at the company’s Racine headquarters is relatively small compared to the overall headcount, the company said.

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Arthur covers banking and finance and the economy at BizTimes while also leading special projects as an associate editor. He also spent five years covering manufacturing at BizTimes. He previously was managing editor at The Waukesha Freeman. He is a graduate of Carroll University and did graduate coursework at Marquette. A native of southeastern Wisconsin, he is also a nationally certified gymnastics judge and enjoys golf on the weekends.

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