Converteam Signs Agreement With GE To Become Unique Global Leader In Power Conversion (France)

Converteam announces today the signing of an agreement with GE pursuant to which the financial Converteam shareholders commit to sell their shares to GE. Pierre Bastid and Florent Battistella will retain a significant shareholding in Converteam after the closing of the transaction.

This agreement is based upon the founding principles of an ambitious growth business project and a rapid integration of Converteam into GE Energy as its center of excellence for Power Conversion.

An ambitious growth business project

This transaction will enable Converteam to:

* Significantly increase its global reach in a market where critical mass is key to remaining competitive and to seizing new business opportunities,

* Benefit from additional investment capacity and superior infrastructure to grow successfully in Power Conversion and access first tier client base,

* Grow its business in key emerging markets such as China, India and Brazil,

* Boost industrial excellence through superior execution capability, cost competitiveness and great quality,

* Become a reference industrial player in addition to being a successful engineering and technological group.

Through the contribution of Converteam, this transaction will enable GE to:

* Accelerate “electrification” of its systems and products in order to develop more industrial solutions for GE customers,

* Capture the value of power conversion systems and solutions built around rotating machines, drives, automation & controls,

* Integrate skilled and recognized engineers able to serve worldwide customers,

* Reinforce its worldwide technological leadership, know-how and systems integration expertise.

Building on the considerable strengths and international market access of both parties, Converteam within GE Energy will be able to:

* Offer a compelling portfolio of integrated systems serving key vertical sectors and addressing the entire chain of energy from power generation and static power conversion to power quality and energy storage,

* Provide a wide range of energy conversion solutions to Oil & Gas and offshore industry’s ever-evolving needs, due to a state-of-the-art technology serving onshore, topside and subsea compression,

* Capture future growth in quickly expanding markets on high potential segments in energy efficiency and renewables, particularly in Wind and Solar,

* Continue to grow and build a stellar reputation as an industrial Metals & Mining platform as well as other industrial applications, thanks to the engineering capabilities to understand intimately the customers’ processes and to design solutions which fully fit with their needs,

* Benefit from the outstanding position in Marine to develop and serve all civil, merchant and navies customers,

* Manage the whole life-cycle, from preventive maintenance to safe modernization and upgrades.

Pierre Bastid, Chairman and CEO of Converteam, declared: “GE is the ideal partner for Converteam. Our strong position in the Power Conversion business is highly complementary to GE’s global leadership in the energy value chain. This transaction will significantly bolster Converteam’s strategic ambitions to further globalize its business, strengthen its worldwide delivery capabilities and create a reference industrial player. It will also help Converteam build the strength and scale to compete on major international contracts. We look forward to the outstanding offerings in power conversion this partnership will bring to our clients as well as the unique benefits it will provide for our employees.”

John Krenicki, GE Vice Chairman and President and CEO of GE Energy, said: “High-efficiency, fully electric solutions represent a mega trend across the global energy landscape. Our customers across key industries are demanding more reliable, efficient, and flexible solutions in order to improve their competitiveness. Converteam’s world-class people and energy efficient products and services connect a lot of pieces in our portfolio and will enable us to offer integrated solutions to our customers.”

Pierre Bastid added: “Converteam’s track record and the motivation of our teams, combined with GE’s extensive industrial expertise and global scale, will be strong catalysts for entering this new chapter of our shared future.”

A rapid and smooth integration of Converteam into GE Energy

Converteam will remain an autonomous profit center and will be the center of excellence for Power Conversion within GE Energy. Its mission statement is clear: maintaining high standards for technology leadership, talent development, and customer focus.

GE is experienced in acquiring and integrating successful companies in a mutually beneficial way. GE has shown its ability to position the acquired companies at the center of its strategy of development as they did with Alstom Heavy Duty Gas Turbine (France) in 1999 and Nuovo Pignone (Italy) in 1994.

Within GE Energy, the contribution of Converteam will be reflected by growth in annual revenues of ca. 1.1 billion euros.

Conditions and Calendar of the transaction

The agreement concerns the acquisition of the Converteam group by GE, after both parties have consulted their employee representative bodies.

National and European clearance processes will now be undertaken with expected completion in the summer.

Converteam is advised in this deal by Messier Maris et Associés and by Hawkpoint.

Source: converteam , March 30, 2011;

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