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General Electric Company has agreed to purchase Smiths Aerospace, the UK supplier of integrated systems for aircraft manufacturers and components for engine builders, for $4.8 billion in cash.
GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt said, “Smiths Aerospace is a world-class business and a great extension of our Aviation business. Like GE, Smiths has built its business by investing in technology and innovative products and services. GE and Smiths fit together well because our product offerings are complementary, and because we have similar customers and deep domain expertise in this industry.
“This acquisition is consistent with our strategy to invest in high-technology infrastructure businesses that deliver strong growth, earnings expansion and higher margins,” Immelt said. “GE Aviation is growing about 10% a year and this acquisition gives us a technology growth platform that will be accretive to our net income and will deliver immediate and future value for our investors.”
Smiths Aerospace, which is part of Smiths Group, has more than 11,000 employees and had $2.4 billion in revenues in 2006. Smiths has a significant presence on most commercial aircraft, including the Boeing 737 and Airbus A320, as well as many military aircraft. More importantly, Smiths has a major presence on new aircraft such as the Boeing 787, Airbus A380 and the Joint Strike Fighter.
Smiths Group Chief Executive Keith Butler-Wheelhouse said, “The Board of Smiths Group is delighted to have reached agreement on the sale of Smiths Aerospace to GE. The consideration reflects the future potential of Smiths Aerospace, which has been created by intense investment in technology over the past five years and by the successful efforts of the dedicated Smiths Aerospace employees.”
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