Colchester-based upholstery manufacturer Alstons has announced the sale of the business to a joint venture comprising the existing management team and Thailand Carpet Manufacturing Public Company (Thailand Carpet Manufacturing). Thailand Carpet Manufacturing, listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand, is managed by the Srivikorn Group, and the Srivikorn family are major shareholders in the company.

The company reports that it has experienced sustained sales growth over recent years, and is in a strong position. The business was sold for an undisclosed sum.

Staff at the Colchester site will not be affected by the deal, and Alstons has emphasised that business will go on as usual. Alstons' management team will continue the day-to-day running of the business, while the company will benefit from the investment that the acquisition represents.

The move into upholstery by Thailand Carpet Manufacturing reflects the Thai company’s strategy of diversification. An announcement was made today to the Stock Exchange of Thailand, and the deal is due to complete on June 19th 2015.

The management team, comprising Philip Grindrod, Terry Cramphorn and Andrew Kennaugh, will hold a significant shareholding in Alstons, with Thailand Carpet Manufacturing holding the majority of the shares. David Alston will remain involved with the business as an advisor focusing particularly around designs and the creative aspects of Alstons, allowing the business to benefit from his experience.  John Alston is looking at pursuing new opportunities.

Despite a number of approaches for the business, David and John Alston felt that the commercial and cultural fit with Thailand Carpet Manufacturing represented the best option, both for them as owners and for the business going forward.

Pimol Srivikorn, chairman of Thailand Carpet Manufacturing, says: “We are delighted to be investors in a prestigious company such as Alstons and look forward to helping the business grow further. We appreciate the culture of the firm and its values that resonate greatly with ours as a business. This is an exciting time to be involved with Alstons, helping to further realise its great potential.”

In a joint statement, David and John Alston add: “We have had a number of approaches for our business, but it was very clear that the combination of the existing management team and Thailand Carpet Manufacturing was the best way forward in so many ways. The culture, commercial knowledge and investment into the company will benefit Alstons immensely. As owners of a family business, with a long history in Colchester, the decision to sell wasn’t an easy one. But we both felt that the time was right to explore other opportunities and we are confident that Alstons will further prosper under its new owners. We cannot thank our past and present staff enough for all their efforts under our family’s ownership.”

Philip Grindrod, who will become the MD of Alstons, says: “The change of ownership at Alstons marks the start of a new phase in the company’s future. We all appreciate the significant contribution made by David and John in building a successful business. We will now build upon that, as we take Alstons forward with a highly skilled, dedicated and committed workforce.”