Rockwell Automation to Acquire Swiss Optoelectronic Safety Business

Rockwell Automation Inc. (Milwaukee) announced today that it has reached a definitive agreement to acquire the Safety and Automation business of the Landquart, Switzerland-based CEDES AG, which supplies 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, but the acquisition includes products, technology, development engineering, marketing, sales, and distribution to serve the industrial safety and automation markets.

"Optoelectronic safety sensors, which include light curtains, are one of the largest product segments of the machine safety market," said Steve Eisenbrown, senior vice president of Rockwell Automation. "This acquisition will expand our comprehensive breadth of competitive machine safety solutions for our customers worldwide."

Beat De Coi, chairman and founder of CEDES, which has offices throughout Europe, 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 expects the transaction to be completed 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, the companies said. As products become available under the Allen-Bradley brand, customers also will be able to purchase them through the Rockwell Automation distribution network. CEDES’ Safety and Automation business will be included in the Architecture and Software operating segment.

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