Thompson becomes the world leader in direct drive friction welding technology.
The business became a public company in 1936 and was renamed John Thompson Ltd. Within a decade, the company had grown rapidly from employing 150 staff to a workforce of 6,000. In 1969, it became part of the NEI Group, which comprised a wide range of engineering capabilities including friction and robotic welding systems.
Today, welding machine manufacturer Thompson is part of the KUKA Group, a German automation powerhouse based in Augsburg, Germany. KUKA employs around 130 people at its advanced welding competence centre, based in Halesowen.