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News

Swatch sell Sokymat Automotive to SMARTRAC

Sokymat Automotive : 25 September, 2008  (Company News)
RFID leaders come under new ownership as Swatch consolidates its operations to focus on core business activities
The Swatch Group in Biel/Bienne, Switzerland, and SMARTRAC of Amsterdam have signed a contract regarding the acquisition by SMARTRAC of 75 percent of Sokymat Automotive. Manfred Rietzler, Chief Technical Officer of SMARTRAC, has purchased the remaining 25 percent of the shares in Sokymat Automotive from Swatch Group for the same terms and conditions as SMARTRAC on a pro rata basis. The acquisition is subject to standard closing conditions.

Sokymat Automotive and all of its 75 employees will continue their profitable activity in Reichshof-Wehnrath under the new ownership.

The Swatch Group separates from Sokymat Automotive to further focus its activities on its thriving and dynamically growing core business of watches and jewellery, with its 19 brands as well as its strategically important related production and technology companies.

The prospects of Sokymat Automotive in its traditional automotive domain remaining intact, The Swatch Group Ltd. agreed to the sale of Sokymat Automotive GmbH to SMARTRAC, a leading supplier of RFID components. Their activities complement each other perfectly.

For SMARTRAC, the acquisition will open up additional growth opportunities enabling access into the market of RFID components for the automotive industry where Sokymat Automotive holds a strong market position.

Sokymat also produces RFID inlays and discs that are applied in manufacturing industries, logistics, laundry, animal identification and science applications. As a result of the acquisition, a new platform will be created on which to accelerate the existing industrial and logistics business of SMARTRAC by combining it with the respective business lines of Sokymat Automotive.

Sokymat Automotive and SMARTRAC have very similar positions in the global RFID value chain. Thus, the acquisition will not create any channel conflicts. The long-term expertise of Sokymat Automotive in the low frequency RFID transponder production including own machinery building capabilities and proprietary know-how are expected to contribute to strengthening SMARTRAC's technology base. Synergies are also expected to come from joint research and development activities.

The Swatch Group will, through its company EM Microelectronic-Marin, remain connected with Sokymat Automotive. EM Microelectronic-Marin SA is a leader in the development and production of ultra low-power integrated circuits. As a major player in RFID integrated circuits, EM Microelectronic-Marin SA will remain a key supplier of Sokymat Automotive thus enhancing the position of EM Microelectronic-Marin SA in this field.
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