Zebra Technologies to acquire Motorola Solutions’ Enterprise business
$3.45 billion cash deal merges two mobility, asset management companies
Zebra Technologies, best known as a barcode company, expanded into enterprise asset management and asset tracking in the past decade and has made a bold move to make their technology solution more global and more mobile.
The company, based in Lincolnshire, Ill., will acquire Motorola Solutions’ Enterprise business unit in a $3.45 billion cash deal, company officials announced April 15. Motorola Solutions was created as part of the break-up of Motorola Inc. just three years ago. The Motorola Mobility business, which included handsets and telecommunications, became part of Google in 2012 and then was sold to Lenovo in January 2014.
Motorola Solutions, based in Schaumburg, Ill., offered mobility products for manufacturing, logistics and public safety and has concentrated on developing logistics and RFID technology and a wide array of ruggedized mobile devices for use in harsh environments. The acquisition brings together two similar and complementary brands. Morotola Solutions’ 2013 sales of $2.5 billion were more than double that of Zebra Technologies’ $1 billion in sales in 2013. Motorola Solutions will retain its government and public safety business units.
“This acquisition will transform Zebra into a leading provider of solutions that deliver greater intelligence and insights into our customers' enterprises and extended value chains,” said Anders Gustafsson, Zebra's chief executive officer, in a press release. “It positions Zebra as a leading technology innovator, with the accelerating convergence of mobility, data analytics and cloud computing.”
“Our Enterprise business is an ideal fit for Zebra,” said Greg Brown, Motorola Solutions chairman and CEO, in a press release. “Last year, we undertook a thorough review of our strategy and concluded that the synergies between our government and enterprise businesses were not as great as the value we could create by being singularly focused on our core Government and Public Safety business. Going forward, we will have absolute clarity of purpose and mission as we serve customers globally with our suite of mission-critical communications solutions.”
“Through this transaction, Zebra will enter the segment where Motorola's enterprise business competes and strengthen its position in key industries including retail, transportation and logistics, and manufacturing and serve approximately 95% of the Fortune 500,” Zebra officials said in a press release. The acquisition by Zebra creates a reach into more than 100 countries, and adds 4,500 employees.
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Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey