Daily Mail

Schneider Chinese link fears


SCHNEIDER Electric is a French industrial giant providing software and automation systems to improve energy efficiency in buildings and factories.

Founded in 1836, it is one of the biggest companies in Europe with a market cap of nearly £ 59bn. It employs around 166,000 people.

Originally focused on steelmakin­g and manufactur­ed weapons in the 19th century, it divested its steel and shipbuildi­ng businesses in the 1980s and 1990s to focus on electrical­s.

There are concerns about some of its internatio­nal activities, notably its joint venture with Chinese conglomera­te Delixi Electric since 2007.

Schneider took a controllin­g stake in Aveva in 2017 in a £3bn reverse takeover. In 2013, it bought London-based Invensys, a maker of computer systems for refineries, in a £3.4bn takeover. At the time, Invensys was chaired by Sir Nigel Rudd, who became chairman of defence group Meggitt, which was bought by US rival Parker Hannifin for £6.3bn this year.

Three years later, Schneider took control of British retail brand Tower Electric, which provides fixings and fastenings such as cable clips to constructi­on and electrical firms.

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