The 87-year-old American Saw and Manufacturing Co., East Longmeadow, Mass., has signed an agreement to be acquired by Newell Rubbermaid, Freeport, Ill., for $450 million in cash. The deal will bolster Newell Rubbermaid's position in the tool market.

Newell Rubbermaid manufactures a diverse portfolio of consumer products, including Sharpie, Paper Mate, Vise-Grip, Levelor, and Graco. The 800-employee American Saw had 2001 sales of $185 million.

In 2002, Newell Rubbermaid completed its acquisition of American Tool Companies, Hoffman Estates, Ill., adding power tool accessories such as Irwin and hand tools such as Vise-Grip and Quick-Grip. That transaction added about $440 million in annual sales to the company's existing hardware business.