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Rockwell Automation to Acquire European Safety Business

The acquisition of the Swiss-headquartered Safety and Automation business of Cedes AG will expand Rockwell’s portfolio of machine safety solutions.

Rockwell Automation Inc., the Milwaukee-based automation and controls supplier, announced on Feb. 28 that it has reached a definitive agreement to acquire the Safety and Automation business of Cedes AG.

Based in Landquart, Switzerland, with sales offices primarily across Europe, Cedes’ Safety and Automation business is a supplier of safety and measuring light curtains, as well as other safety and non-safety optoelectronics, control units and related accessories for industrial applications. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

The business unit being acquired includes products, technology, development engineering, marketing, sales and distribution to serve the industrial safety and automation markets, Rockwell said.

“As the global leader in the process and machine safety market, Rockwell Automation’s acquisition of Cedes’ Safety and Automation business will enhance a strategic segment within our product portfolio,” said Steve Eisenbrown, senior vice president of Rockwell Automation. “Optoelectronic safety sensors, which include light curtains, are one of the largest product segments of the machine safety market. This acquisition will expand our comprehensive breadth of competitive machine safety solutions for our customers worldwide.”

Beat De Coi, Cedes chairman and founder, said: “For 20 years, we have specialized in developing innovative optical sensor technologies for a wide range of applications including industrial safety and automation markets. Combining these capabilities with Rockwell Automation’s global leadership in industrial automation control and information systems will enable more manufacturers around the world to help protect their workers from machinery and equipment accidents.”

Subject to satisfaction of customary closing conditions, Rockwell Automation expects the transaction to be completed by early in the second calendar quarter of 2008. After the acquisition is complete, customers can continue to purchase products through the current distribution network of Cedes’ Safety and Automation business, Rockwell said. As products become available under Rockwell Automation’s Allen-Bradley brand, customers will also be able to purchase them through the Rockwell Automation distribution network.

Cedes’ Safety and Automation business will be included in Rockwell’s Architecture and Software operating segment.

Rockwell Automation Inc.

Cedes AG

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