By Mary C. Gannon

Oilgear Co., Milwaukee, has been acquired and taken private by an affiliate of investment firm Mason Wells for about $31 million, says the company.

The acquisition by Mason Wells Buyout Fund II Limited Partnership, an affiliate of the Midwestbased private equity firm Mason Wells, will be completed by the end of 2006.

The acquisition will strengthen Oilgear's market presence, says Oilgear's president and CEO David Zuege. "We will be able to expand our range of products and continue to provide creative solutions for our customers' fluid power applications," Zuege says.

Richard Armbrust, who has served in leadership positions for numerous companies, including ABB Inc. in New Berlin and Invensys PLC, will become president of Oilgear when the deal is complete.