UK software firm Aveva merges with Schneider Electric
Tue 5 Sep 2017
Schneider has carried out a takeover of UK engineering software developer Aveva.
Cambridge based firm Aveva will merge with the software branch of French energy giant Schneider to form a larger company worth around £3 billion.
The terms of the deal mean that Schneider will take a 60% stake in the new larger group, in what has been called a ‘reverse takeover’ by the companies. Aveva will keep the remaining 40%, while its shareholders will receive £550 million from Schneider and £100 million from Aveva.
The successful deal comes after two failed attempts by the companies, in 2015 and 2016. Now, following this agreement, Schneider says that ‘the combined entity will be a global leader in engineering and industrial software, with scale and relevance in key markets as well as an extensive technology portfolio.’
Aveva, which sprung up from Cambridge University in the 1960s by pioneering 3D design, will be allowed to remain headquartered in the historic university city, and will stay listed on the London Stock Exchange.
Given the enlarged size of the company, Schneider has decided that Aveva will need a new CEO, ‘with a proven track record and experience in managing a global software business.’ Until a new CEO is found, current chief exec James Kidd will remain in the position. Once he’s been replaced, he will move down to deputy CEO, and CFO.
Schneider Electric chairman and CEO, Jean-Pascal Tricoire, said: ‘The combination will address customers’ requirements along the full asset life cycle.
‘It will also create the right environment and structure for the software teams to aggressively develop their business, while benefiting from Schneider Electric’s multiple go-to-market channels and segment expertise around the world.’
Chairman of Aveva, Philip Aiken, noted the opportunity for the company to enter new markets: ‘The transaction will be transformational to Aveva, creating a global leader in industrial software, which will be able to better compete on a global scale.
‘Aveva will significantly expand its scale and product portfolio, increase its capabilities in the owner operator market, diversify its end user markets and increase its geographic exposure to the North American market, in line with our strategic goals.’
Schneider was recently involved in another significant acquisition, having bought automatic transfer switch business ASCO from Vertiv.