Publisher acquires specialist motorsport engineering company

Dec 23, 2020

The GDS Engineering factory.

A SPECIALIST motorsport engineering company has new owners.

GDS Engineering has been acquired from its founder Dudley Bacon by publishing entrepreneur Graham Harris.

The publisher of industry titles Motorsport Monday and MotorsportWeek.com has revealed ambitious plans to expand the product range and reach of GDS, which  specialises in the design, manufacture and supply of products for pit garages in motorsport and related industries. 

GDS supplies pit garage walling systems to teams and organisations across the motorsport industry, including the sport’s governing body the FIA. More of the company’s garages can be found in Formula 1and Formula E as well as with the majority of the World Endurance Championship and Le Mans teams. 

GDS has also developed its own high quality anti-static race-flooring as well as supplying the pit-lane gantry lighting rigs at Le Mans each year. The company also offers other items of pit garage equipment such as timing boards, pit perches, helmet driers and flight cases. 

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Mr Harris said: “I have been impressed by GDS’s work in pit lanes around the world over for many years. They are benchmark for the industry in terms of garage walling, floor and gantry lighting systems and the company’s customer service for its global clients is also excellent. 

“When I became aware there might be an opportunity to buy GDS it was something I knew I had to seriously investigate…. and here we are. I am truly excited about the future for the company.”

Mr Bacon, whose patented designs are at the heart of the GDS product range, will remain with GDS in the role of production consultant and is looking forward to this next phase of the company’s development. 

He said: “I think we have come a long way since I founded GDS in the early 2000s and I am delighted to still be playing an active role, which will help provide continuity for Graham and the team – but overall, I felt very much that the time was right to hand on the baton to the next generation.”

Alistair Frary will continue in his role as GDS’ sales director and will spearhead the company’s sales drive for further growth. Mr Harris’ business partner in the publishing side of his business, Ryan Wood, will become group marketing director and Emma Oliver will be promoted to administrative and logistics manager.

Mr Harris, who has been involved in motorsport for four decades as competitor, team owner, journalist and publisher, sees huge potential for GDS. 

“We have a fantastic product offering at GDS, which we can pitch at various price points to suit both the serious competitor and the up-and-coming teams too. I feel that we have only really scratched the surface of what is possible.

“We also have distributor partners in many countries around the world and we aim to widen and strengthen this network as part of our expansion plans.”

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