FORMIGINE, ITALY -- SITI B&T Group has further strengthened its leadership position in all stages of the ceramic tile production process with the acquisition of Ancora, a company specializing in the production of complete lines for ceramic tile finishing operations founded in Sassuolo in 1969.

With this operation, SITI B&T Group, a manufacturer of complete plant, from raw materials preparation through to finishing, aims to create a major manufacturing hub located between Sassuolo and Formiginein the heart of the Italian ceramic cluster. This geographical location is of profound industrial and symbolic significance given that Italy has always been the cradle of innovation in the ceramic machinery sector.

Ancora's technology for polishing, honing, cutting, grinding and protective treatment of ceramic tiles is currently used on more than 800 installed linesin 40 countries worldwide and generates a turnover of around 23 million euros. The company has invested more than five million euros in research & development over the last three years and has registered a number of Italian and international patents.

Together with the parent company Ancora, SITI B&T has also acquired the Spanish and Brazilianbranches and the subsidiaries Cimas (industrial mechanical structures) and HiCoat Coating System (protective treatments for polished and honed porcelain).

"Ancora is a historic brand in the Sassuolo district and a standard-bearer for Italian quality, offering a wide range of innovative products that complement our own," said SITI B&T Group's CEO Fabio Tarozzi. "It has a state-of-the-art mechanical workshop and has always excelled for its commitment to R&D. It is an outstanding company that was looking to become part of a large Group in order to fully exploit its potential. We believe that together we will be able to achieve further technological growth and offer an even better service to our global customers."

In a market dominated by large sizes and digital decoration, surface finishing is becoming an increasingly frequent and important operation for high-end products. For this reason, ceramic tile manufacturers the world over are in search of the finest Italian technologies.

Business continuity and successful integration with SITI B&T Group will be ensured by Ancora's outgoing Chairman Mario Corradini, who will stay on as a board member and as Head of technical development at Ancora, and Franco Ponsone, a partner and manager who will serve as Managing Director of Ancora.