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GE Accelerates Growth in Mining with Planned Acquisitions of Equipment Makers Industrea Ltd. and Fairchild International

Date : 05/15/2012 @ 7:52PM
Source : Business Wire
Stock : General Electric (GE)
Quote : 26.875  0.015 (0.06%) @ 11:00AM
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GE Accelerates Growth in Mining with Planned Acquisitions of Equipment Makers Industrea Ltd. and Fairchild International

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GE (NYSE: GE) announced today that it is pursuing acquisitions of two underground mining equipment manufacturers in support of the global expansion of its mining business. GE has entered into an agreement to acquire 100 percent of Australia-based Industrea Limited (ASX: IDL, OTCQX: IULTY), a provider of safety and productivity-enhancing mining equipment and services. The transaction is valued at approximately A$700 million, which represents a 5.5x EBITDA multiple based on full-year financial data as of Dec. 31, 2011. The company also signed a binding Letter of Intent (LOI) to acquire Fairchild International, an independently owned and operated underground mining equipment manufacturer located in Glen Lyn, Virginia. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

The combination of the two entities expands GE’s product offering to address approximately 35% of the underground mining value chain. Industrea Ltd. and Fairchild International together are well positioned in dynamic growth regions for mining, including Australia, China (Industrea), and the United States (Fairchild). GE will enable these regionally focused enterprises to reach a global customer base with enhanced products based on GE’s clean propulsion systems, energy storage offering, and world-class system integration capabilities. Both Industrea Ltd. and Fairchild International will benefit from GE’s lean manufacturing and effective global supply chain management.

Both companies will become part of GE Transportation’s global mining business which utilizes the people, technologies, and products from across GE to help its customers solve their toughest mining challenges. GE helps mines work better by providing innovative solutions in critical areas such as power, water, and productivity.

Industrea Ltd.

With more than 700 employees, seven Australian locations, and a significant presence in China, Industrea Ltd. is well positioned for growth across its four divisions: Mining Equipment (flame- and explosion-proof underground mining vehicles and equipment), Mining Technology (drill guidance systems and collision avoidance systems), Gas Management (specialized underground in-seam drilling and gas drainage services) and Mining Services (integrated contract mining services).

With the proposed acquisition of Industrea, GE makes a strategic investment in expanding its manufacturing footprint to Australia and contributing to a strong industrial manufacturing base in the country. In addition, GE expands its product portfolio to underground mining and increases its presence in key mining regions Australia and China. Industrea Ltd. can benefit from GE’s global footprint and customer relationships, and mining technologies.

Lorenzo Simonelli, President and CEO of GE Transportation said: “Industrea has built an attractive business supplying major mining companies in growth regions. The company has developed a solid record of helping customers increase production while continually implementing safety improvements.

“We believe that Industrea’s business can grow more rapidly by expanding its product suite and geographic reach combined with GE’s technical expertise and global customer relationships. GE’s equipment experience, battery and hybridization technologies, propulsion system offering and global distribution capability will help us expand the Industrea business. It will also improve the environmental performance of Industrea’s products by lowering fuel use and emissions. We see this as a way to bring the reality of Ecomagination to the world of mining," Simonelli said.

Globally, mining equipment is a $61 billion industry driven by dynamic, global infrastructure growth as well as several structural factors such as increasing automation, and heightened safety and environmental requirements.

Robin Levison, Managing Director and CEO of Industrea Ltd. said: “GE’s resources, technical expertise and global customer relationships are expected to accelerate the growth of Industrea’s businesses, building on the company’s strong reputation for products and services that enhance the safety and productivity of mining companies. New career opportunities will open up for our people, and customers will be able to benefit from increased resources devoted to product development and innovation."

The transaction will be subject to shareholder approval. Industrea Ltd. shareholders will vote on the offer in the second half of 2012. The transaction is also subject to customary conditions including relevant regulatory approvals. The transaction is expected to close later in 2012.

Fairchild International

GE Transportation signed a binding Letter of Intent (LOI) to acquire Virginia-based, independently owned and operated Fairchild International. The company employs approximately 150 people and manufactures a wide range of underground mining equipment, including diesel and battery-powered scoops, continuous miners, haulage systems, shield haulers, and maintenance vehicles.

With this acquisition, GE will expand its product offering to underground mining and grow Fairchild’s customer base beyond its core U.S. market to serve mining customers worldwide. With its electric propulsion and state-of-the-art energy storage systems, GE will be able to deliver higher efficiency and productivity to mining customers worldwide while lowering fuel use, emissions, and life-cycle cost.

Lorenzo Simonelli, President and CEO of GE Transportation said: “With the acquisition of Fairchild International we will combine nearly fifty years of leading industry knowledge and expertise in designing, building and servicing underground mining equipment with GE’s global reach, technology leadership in clean propulsion and energy storage systems, and world-class system integration capabilities. We will bring the next generation of top performing underground mining equipment to mining customers around the globe.”

Myrleen Fairchild, President of Fairchild International said: “This is an exciting time for Fairchild International, our employees, my family, and for me. I want to thank all our customers and suppliers for their trust and support over the past decades. I’m confident that our people and products will continue to flourish under the leadership of GE for the benefit of our customers.”

The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2012. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

About GE

GE (NYSE: GE) works on things that matter. The best people and the best technologies taking on the toughest challenges. Finding solutions in energy, health and home, transportation and finance. Building, powering, moving and curing the world. Not just imagining. Doing. GE works. For more information, visit the company's website at www.ge.com.

About GE Transportation

GE Transportation, a unit of GE (NYSE: GE), solves the world’s toughest transportation challenges. GE Transportation builds equipment that moves the rail, mining and marine industries. Our fuel-efficient and lower-emissions freight and passenger locomotives, diesel engines for rail, marine and stationary power applications, signaling and software solutions, drive systems for mining trucks, and value-added services help customers grow. GE Transportation is headquartered in Erie, Penn., and employs approximately 12,000 employees worldwide. For more information visit the company's website at www.getransportation.com.

About Industrea Limited

Industrea provides highly specialised products and services to the mining industry. Customers throughout the world use Industrea’s products and services to enhance the safety and productivity of their mining operations. Headquartered in Brisbane, Industrea is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange under the ASX stock code of IDL and on the OTCQX in the US under ticker code IULTY. For more information on Industrea Limited and all announcements, presentations and webcasts, please visit www.industrea.com.au.

About Fairchild International

Fairchild International has been serving the mining industry for over 47 years and is an independently owned and operated underground coal mining equipment manufacturer. The company manufactures the industry's most complete line of AC VFD and DC battery-powered scoops along with permissible and non-permissible diesel-powered scoop and longwall shield haulers. Fairchild also manufactures a range of low seam continuous miners and haulage systems, maintenance vehicles, maintenance centers and cargo carriers. The company is headquartered in Glen Lyn, VA, with established warehouses and service centers in Beckley, WV; DuQuoin, IL; Huntington, UT; Indiana, PA; and Pikeville, KY. For more information visit the company's website at www.fairchildint.com.

Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Statements:

This document contains “forward-looking statements” – that is, statements related to future, not past, events. In this context, forward-looking statements often address our expected future business and financial performance and financial condition, and often contain words such as “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe,” “seek,” “see,” or “will.” Forward-looking statements by their nature address matters that are, to different degrees, uncertain. For us, particular uncertainties that could cause our actual results to be materially different than those expressed in our forward-looking statements include: current economic and financial conditions, including volatility in interest and exchange rates, commodity and equity prices and the value of financial assets; potential market disruptions or other impacts arising in the United States or Europe from developments in the European sovereign debt situation; the impact of conditions in the financial and credit markets on the availability and cost of General Electric Capital Corporation’s (GECC) funding and on our ability to reduce GECC’s asset levels as planned; the impact of conditions in the housing market and unemployment rates on the level of commercial and consumer credit defaults; changes in Japanese consumer behavior that may affect our estimates of liability for excess interest refund claims (Grey Zone); pending and threatened litigation against WMC, including increased activity by securitization trustees; our ability to maintain our current credit rating and the impact on our funding costs and competitive position if we do not do so; the adequacy of our cash flow and earnings and other conditions which may affect our ability to pay our quarterly dividend at the planned level; our plan to resume GECC dividends, which is subject to Federal Reserve review; the level of demand and financial performance of the major industries we serve, including, without limitation, air and rail transportation, energy generation, real estate and healthcare; the impact of regulation and regulatory, investigative and legal proceedings and legal compliance risks, including the impact of financial services regulation; strategic actions, including acquisitions, joint ventures and dispositions and our success in completing announced transactions and integrating acquired businesses; the impact of potential information technology or data security breaches; and numerous other matters of national, regional and global scale, including those of a political, economic, business and competitive nature. These uncertainties may cause our actual future results to be materially different than those expressed in our forward-looking statements. We do not undertake to update our forward-looking statements.



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