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27 May 16. Ultra has agreed to sell its global ID business, Ultra Electronics ID, to leading mid-market private equity firm LDC, for an initial cash consideration of £22m. Additional payments of up to £3m will be made subject to earnings growth over the next two years. The proceeds will be used to reduce group indebtedness. All of the ID management team will transfer with the business. Following the divestment Ultra Electronics ID will operate as Magicard Ltd. Based in the UK with additional sales offices in US, Dubai and China, ID designs and manufactures proprietary, instant issuance card printers and associated consumables. Its products, which include direct-to-card and reverse transfer printers, are capable of printing and encoding all types of card format. The company sells its products internationally through a broad distributor network. ID will continue to operate from its existing facilities and all employees will transfer with the business.
For the year ended 31 December 2015, the ID business had revenues of £19.3m and operating profit of £4.0m. The gross assets of the ID business at 31 December 2015 were £8.8m. The transaction is subject to US regulatory approvals. Assuming satisfaction of all closing conditions and approvals, the transaction is expected to close towards the end of the second quarter of 2016.
25 May 16. Finland Privatizing Portion of Defense Company Patria. Finnish state-owned defense manufacturer Patria on Wednesday announced a plan to privatize a portion of the company by selling it to Kongsberg, a partially state-owned defense company in Norway.
“The competition authorities have granted their approval concerning sale by State of Finland of 49.9 percent of the defense company Patria Oyj to Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace AS,” Patria said in a statement.
Patria said the value of the deal was 283.5m euros ($316m).
Finland is not member of NATO, unlike neighboring Norway, but it has intensified its partnership with NATO by participating in joint exercises in the Baltic Sea region, where the United States and neighboring Russia have increased military activity lately, due to the conflict in Ukraine.
Patria’s main product, an armored vehicle, was a profitable business until 2008, when the company was linked to bribing scandals in sales to Slovenia, Egypt and Croatia. Eventually, after seven years, all charges were dropped against Patria and its bosses. The company has managed to recover from the reputational damage it suffered as a result, but in 2014 Finland’s government decided to seek a new minority owner to the company. In 2015, Patria’s operating profit was 46.8m euros ($52.1m), down some 16 percent from a year before. Half of Kongsberg is owned by the Norwegian state and the rest by international investors. (Source: Google/Defense News)
24 May 16. RINA announces definitive agreement for the acquisition of 100% of Edif Group. Rina S.p.A (“Rina”), the multi-national testing, inspection, certification and consulting engineering group based in Genoa, Italy has purchased the Edif Group, which includes the ERA engineering consultancy and the NDE testing, inspection and certification business. This acquisition results in an expanded international geographic footprint for RINA, particularly in the US and UK, together with an increased profile in the aerospace and defence industry.
For RINA the acquisition of Edif is part of a long term growth plan and serves to enhance the company’s services through both its certification and consulting engineering businesses. The business potential in the US and UK aerospace and defence industries, is significant and the deal will give RINA fast track access to those markets. In the US market, where e