EDS Plans Largest European Acquisition

Electronic Data Systems Corp. announced April 2 plans to purchase Systematics AG of Hamburg, Germany, a move that will double the company's presence in Germany.

The $570 million deal, EDS' largest European acquisition, is expected to close by mid-year, said officials with the Plano, Texas, company. The purchase will deepen EDS' penetration in European markets such as finance, government, insurance and telecommunications.

"This acquisition underscores our focus on Europe in general and Germany in particular," EDS Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dick Brown said. "EDS will be better able to bring comprehensive, targeted industry service offerings to Europe by combining Systematics' local industry knowledge and systems integration expertise with our significant strategic infrastructure outsourcing business."

Systematics has expertise in customer relationship management, enterprise resource planning, digital value chain and systems integration. The company reported revenues of $570 million in 2000.

Under terms of the agreement, EDS will pay approximately $430 million in cash and issue $140 million in EDS shares to acquire all outstanding Systematics shares.

EDS isn't alone in across-the-Atlantic dealmaking. Lockheed Martin Corp., Bethesda, Md., announced plans to sell its Comsat Mobile Communications operations to Telenor, of Oslo, Norway, in a $116.5 million cash deal. Comsat Mobile has about $100 million in annual revenue and provides global satellite communications.

Telenor is a provider of telecommunications, data and media communication services. The company had about $4.2 billion in sales in 2000.

The deal with Lockheed Martin is expected to close in the next several months, following regulatory approvals.

About the Author

Nick Wakeman is the editor-in-chief of Washington Technology. Follow him on Twitter: @nick_wakeman.

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