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Tue August 20, 2013 - National Edition
Atlas Copco AB and Edwards Group Ltd. have entered into an agreement where Atlas Copco will acquire Edwards, a leading global supplier of vacuum and abatement solutions for an amount of up to $1.6 billion. The company is headquartered in the United Kingdom and listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange in New York.
“Edwards is a technology leader with a well-developed structure and solid customer relationships in industries we know well. It is a great fit for Atlas Copco,” said Ronnie Leten, President and CEO at Atlas Copco. “The vacuum solutions market is growing and has similar characteristics to our existing industrial businesses.”
Edwards is a technology and market leader in sophisticated vacuum products and abatement solutions with more than 90 years’ experience. The products and services are integral to manufacturing processes, such as for semiconductors and flat panel displays, and are used within an increasingly diverse range of industrial applications. The vacuum solutions market is estimated to be larger than $6 billion. Edwards has more than 3 200 employees and is headquartered in Crawley, United Kingdom.
The acquisition of Edwards offers Atlas Copco an opportunity to expand into a growing business which serves industries that are well-known to Atlas Copco. There are several synergies between vacuum and compressed air solutions in sales, service and technology development.
“ We recognize the strength Edwards has in its people and products as well as their excellence in technology and innovation. We are excited that this professional company will join our Group , ” said Ronnie Leten.
The acquisition is an all-cash transaction utilizing Atlas Copco’s existing own funds.
The transaction, which will be completed by way of a merger, is subject to customary closing conditions including Edwards shareholder approval and antitrust clearance. It has been unanimously approved by the Boards of Directors of both companies. Further, the Board of Directors of Edwards unanimously recommends the offer to all Edwards shareholders. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014. Edwards shareholders representing approximately 84% of the current shares outstanding have entered into voting agreements with Atlas Copco to vote in favor of the transaction.
Edwards will be part of Atlas Copco’s new Vacuum Solutions division within the Compressor Technique business area.