Albany International has agreed to sell its Primaloft insulation business to a newly created company, Primaloft Inc. The deal is a management buyout orchestrated by Primaloft's senior management, led by Michael Joyce, who previously acted as president of Albany's Applied Technology Group. The transaction is worth some $38 million and is supported by an investment company, Prudential Capital Partners, which has been a business partner of Albany for two decades.

Jochen Lagemann, Primaloft's European chief, told us that no changes are expected in the company's strategy. He explained that Albany wants to concentrate on its core businesses, which are engineered fabrics for the paper manufacturing industry and engineered composites.

One major change, however, will be the fact that we shall no longer be able to report on Primaloft's results, which have been excellent lately in terms of sales and profit margins. Albany remains a publicly quoted company.

In the fourth quarter of 2011, Primaloft's sales soared by 47.1 percent to $5.22 million, and its operating profit went up to $2.23 million – six times or so higher than in the previous year's period. A large part of the tremendous growth came from Europe.