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Thales acquires Barco maritime safety and surveillance arm

Barco : 02 September, 2008  (Company News)
Maritime rescue, coastal surveillance and vessel traffic management businesses based at Barco in Stuttgart sold to Thales
Following a competitive bidding process, Thales and Barco have announced the closing of the acquisition of Barco's software development unit for maritime safety and surveillance.

The agreement covers the sale of the OPSCenter software components for use in the maritime domain, and also includes a license for Barco's development toolbox for operational display systems. Barco will continue to provide hardware-based visualization solutions for maritime applications.

Barco's software development unit for maritime safety and surveillance, located in Stuttgart, Germany, focuses on three related business areas serving operational centers that provide surveillance, navigation and other services to ports. These are Maritime Rescue & Coordination Centers, Coastal Surveillance Systems and Vessel Traffic - and Vessel Traffic Management & Information Systems.

For Thales, this acquisition comes in the context of an increasing number of states recognising the need to interconnect both Safety and Surveillance systems in view of managing the entire scope of MSS activity.

"This move represents a key element in Thales's ambition to further strengthen our position in the growing market of Maritime Safety & Surveillance. The combination of Thales's proven capability and continued investment in the development and integration of critical information systems combined with Barco's software development expertise in three core MSS capabilities, is a powerful blend to further penetrate and consolidate Thales's position in the MSS market", says Jean-Georges Malcor, Senior-Vice President of Thales and head of the Naval Division.

"We decided to divest these activities as they did not strategically fit into our business model," says Carl Peeters, President of Barco's Security and Monitoring Division. "We are focused on long-term relationships with partners and integrators worldwide and not on working directly with end-users as an application services provider as was the case in maritime safety and surveillance. In the maritime domain, Barco will of course continue to supply LCD displays and rear-projected video walls."

"We are pleased to have found in Thales a strategic partner for the acquisition of our Stuttgart based MSS business. Thales's proven expertise in large scale systems integration, along with Barco's key MSS capabilities and market references will provide the business with a first-class environment for further growth", concludes Carl Peeters.

As a result of this operation, the 22 Stuttgart-based employees will gain access to Thales's worldwide base of dual-use technologies and benefit from an established international go-to-market environment.
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