Automation acquisitions, expansions: Are you next?

Recent acquisitions and partnerships were announced by companies in the wireless technologies, power and process instrumentation, machine tool, and oil and gas sectors. Is your company a target? Here are a few considerations.

By Control Engineering Staff November 25, 2008

A number of acquisitions and partnerships were announced recently by companies in the wireless technologies, power and process instrumentation, machine tool, and oil and gas sectors. Acquiring companies include Bosch Rexroth, Rockwell Automation, ABB and Synapse. What makes the acquisition of a technology or engineering company attractive? Is your company a target?Here are a few considerations.-Do you have deep-pocket competitors with large cash reserves or is your company seen as a bargain in today’s market?-Does your company offer automation, controls, instrumentation, engineering, services, or patents that fill out a competitor’s offerings? “Complete solution” is a commonly used phrase and, while integration of technologies from varied companies continues daily, one-stop shopping often is touted as an advantage.-Would your leadership team or other talented employees help fill a competitor’s needs or goals?-Are your processes or manufacturing capabilities appealing to a potential suitor?-Do your customers or suppliers offer something to your competitors that they do not currently have?-Would your go-to-market strategy (sales force, distributors, or online structure) significantly help a competitor in the marketplace, filling missing or desirable vertical industry segments?-Is your company family owned or privately held, where founders are near retirement and do not seem to be grooming successors?For more on this topic, including advice on what to do and not to do when a takeover bid is received, read:- Is your company a takeover target? – “Takeover” article in Wikipedia .Recent acquisitions, expansions, and partnerships include:-

ABB agreed to

Ltd. of Calgary, Canada, which will expand its presence and capabilities in the oil and gas sector;-

Bosch Rexroth AG will acquire Interlit Joistgen

GmbH of Cologne, Germany. The company develops and markets systems for cooling and lubrication technology, including machine tools used under the Interlit brand name;-

Rockwell Automation Inc. agreed to acquire

, a privately held engineering firm that delivers automation solutions to the electrical power and other heavy process industries in China; and-


(CEL) to collaborate on IEEE802.15.4 wireless mesh network.For other recent related stories, search on “merger” or “acquisition” atop and re-sort results by date.– Mark T. Hoske , editor in chief Control Engineering Register here and scroll down to select your choice of eNewsletters free.