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Simrad acquires B&G

By IBI Magazine / David Foxwell

Marine electronics manufacturer Simrad has this morning announced the acquisition of UK company Brookes and Gatehouse from the Yeoman Group plc.

It was back in June of this year that Yeoman announced its intention to sell off its interests in B&G so that it could concentrate on the development of its traffic and travel systems. Since that time several marine electronics companies have expressed interest and entered into non-disclosure agreements with Yeoman. Of these, several were known to be rejected by Yeoman at an early stage and Simrad, part of the Norwegian-based Kongsberg Group, has emerged as the victor of a shortlist.

Commenting on the acquisition, Simrad president, Jan Berner said, "B&G will continue to run as a separate company and we envisage little change at its Romsey headquarters. This acquisition allows us to further consolidate our position as a premium brand manufacturer and provides us with access to additional technologies, assisting us to penetrate new markets in superyacht and yacht racing products. B&G will benefit from greater exposure to worldwide markets through an extensive marketing program. We look forward to exploiting synergies between our product technologies. This will assist us to penetrate new markets for us in super yacht and yacht racing products."

"In turn, B&G will benefit from greater exposure to worldwide markets through an extensive marketing programme. We see this as a significant move forward both for Simrad and B&G and look forward to exploiting synergies between our product technologies," said Berner.

A spokesperson for B&G declined to make any comment on the sale, but indicated that B&G would be issuing its own statement later today.

Speaking to IBI, Jan Berner said Simrad intended to continue manufacturing in the UK for the foreseeable future. "We want to stabilise the position of the company in the short to medium term," Berner told IBI, who said the purchase price for B&G had been GBP2.7 million.

However, Berner confirmed that B&G's managing director Tony Birch would only remain with the company through what he called "the transitional period," and a new managing director for B&G would be sought.

Berner will be one of the guest speakers on the IBI ICOMIA breakfast briefing on the first day of the METS show in November that will look at likely developments in the next 10 years of the marine industry.

(13 October 2003)




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