Business Standard

United Tech not planning break-up after $23- billion Rock well deal


Aerospace and industrial company United Technologi­es Corp said on Tuesday it has no immediate plans to sell off other businesses after it agreed to acquire avionics supplier Rockwell Collins Inc in a $23billion deal that creates a powerhouse aerospace supplier.

United Tech also knocked down speculatio­n that the acquisitio­n would prompt it to spin off other businesses, such as Carrier air conditione­rs or Otis elevators.

“We need the cash flows from all the businesses to help pay down some of this debt" and retain an investment­grade credit rating, United Tech Chief Executive Officer Greg Hayes said on a conference call with analysts.

United Tech expects to borrow $15 billion to fund the deal, Hayes said, and it will assume $7 billion in Rockwell Collins debt as part of the transactio­n announced on Monday, which is expected to close by the third quarter of 2018.

“Because the deal is structured as a convention­al acquisitio­n with debt, United Tech has to pay some of this off before doing anything else," said Robert Stallard, analyst at Vertical Research Partners.

Rockwell’s shares rose 0.9 per cent to $131.75 in early trading. United Tech shares, part of the Dow Jones industrial average, fell 3 per cent to $114.37, reflecting the expected dilution in earnings from the stock-and-cash deal, analysts said.

The acquisitio­n creates a major supplier to Boeing Co , Airbus SE and Bombardier at a time when the plane makers are pressing for price cuts and trying to compete against suppliers on services and spare parts.

It also marks the second large aerospace deal that creates an engines-to-seating supplier, following jet engine maker Safran SA's pending $7.7-billion deal to buy seat maker Zodiac Aerospace. Safran said Tuesday it would look at assets that might come up for sale after the United Tech-Rockwell deal.

Safran is part of CFM Internatio­nal, a joint venture with General Electric Co that makes LEAP engines used on Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 MAX aircraft.

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