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Schneider Electric Gets EU Approval for $5.6 Billion Invensys Buy

BRUSSELS--French electrical equipment company Schneider Electric SA (SU.FR) has received European Union antitrust approval for its 3.4 billion pound ($5.6 billion) acquisition of U.K. engineering group Invensys PLC (ISYS.LN). The approval clears the way for a deal, Schneider hopes will raise its industrial automation and software business to the level of the world's main players, such as Siemens AG, Mitsubishi Electric Corp. and Rockwell Automation Inc. The European Commission said Friday the deal doesn't raise any competition concerns. "The activities of the two companies are complementary and the merged entity would continue to face several strong competitors in the affected markets," the commission said in a statement. Schneider agreed in July to pay 502 pence a share of U.K.-based Invensys in a mix of cash and shares, a deal that was unanimously recommended to shareholders by Invensys's board. Schneider, with annual revenue of 23.9 billion euros ($32.5 billion), has in recent years made a big push into the business of providing industrial sites with bundled offerings of electrical and industrial equipment, software and services, instead of selling low voltage devices, its historical business. The company expects the deal to generate revenue savings of EUR400 million a year by 2018 as a result of enlarged offerings, complementary customer bases and additional scale from the integration of Invensys with Schneider Electric. The company will finance the acquisition with a mix of cash and debt. Write to Tom Fairless at (Inti Landauro in Paris contributed to this article.) Subscribe to WSJ:

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