Legrand set to buy Milestone
WORLD: French manufacturer, Legrand, has signed an agreement to purchase US-based company, Milestone AV Technologies, for US$950 million. This is the second major acquisition announced by the electrical and building infrastructure specialist in the space of a few days, following hot on the heels of Legrand’s purchase of Server Technology Inc.
The Milestone acquisition will see the likes of Chief, Sanus, Projecta, Da-Lite and Vaddio join Middle Atlantic Products in Legrand’s A/V portfolio. ‘The acquisition of Milestone allows Legrand to pursue its ongoing reinforcement in digital infrastructure, more specifically in the high-value A/V infrastructure and power segment,’ said Gilles Schnepp, chairman and CEO of Legrand. ‘Milestone will bring Legrand leading positions in commercial and residential A/V mounts, as well as in projector screens enabling the Group to provide A/V customers with scalable, end-to-end offerings. Milestone’s robust leading positions, well-known brands, businesses supported by strong social and technological megatrends, customer-centric approach, ongoing innovation, and active CSR policy are key assets which make this acquisition a highly valuable move that “ticks all the boxes” of Legrand fundamentals.’
The French manufacturer believes the acquisition of Milestone will yield ‘mid-term sales synergies’. It cites Milestone’s existing relationship with 6,000 professional A/V dealers as having the potential to build up the 3,500 dealer relationships tied to its Middle Atlantic brand. Likewise, Legrand believes its relationship with electrical, IT and data communication distributors could create opportunities for Milestone in this area. Lastly, the French manufacturer believes that Milestone’s locations in North America, Europe and Asia could provide opportunities to expand Legrand’s A/V infrastructure and power business into new geographical areas.
Legrand states that the financing of the Milestone acquisition, which ultimately will be made via new debt, is fully secured in the short term by a commitment letter for a bridge-to-bond loan and by Legrand’s existing credit facilities.
The French company’s purchase of Server Technology Inc, meanwhile, is part of its expansion in the data centre market. The US-based company specialises in intelligent power distribution units and Legrand believes this will enhance its product offering in this market.