Chinese consumer appliance maker Midea to buy Israeli motion control firm Servotronix for US$170 million

Tue Feb 14, 2017 - 11:17am GMT+0000

Chinese consumer appliances maker Midea Group Co., Ltd. has acquired a controlling stake of Israeli automation solutions developer Servotronix Motion Control Ltd. for an enterprise value of US$170 million.

The deal comes shortly after the completion of Midea’s acquisition of German industrial robot manufacturer Kuka Group for over US$5 billion last month, which marks another milestone for Midea to become a robotics and automation high-end industrial manufacturer.

“This strategic alliance represents another milestone of Midea’s expansion in industrial automation and intelligent manufacturing,” said Paul Fang, the chairman and CEO of Midea. “We believe that Servotronix’ technological leadership and innovation in motion control will generate significant synergies with Midea in terms of value chain integration and new market development.”

“By leveraging each other’s complementary capabilities and resources, the two companies will join forces to develop exciting new products and explore growth opportunities going forward,” Fang continues.

Founded in 1987 by Dr. Cohen, Servotronix develops and manufactures automation solutions focusing on motion control solutions, ranging from advanced encoders, servo drivers to multi-axis motion controllers, for a diverse range of industries including robotics, printing, textiles, medical equipment, renewable energy, Computer Numeric Control (CNC) and machine tools, food and beverages, and electronics.

Since its inception, Servitronix’s portfolio list includes the development of the world’s first PC-based 48-axis motion controllers in 1991, a digital servodrive for Baldur in 1992, a magnetic absolute encoder in 2013, and in 2014, an integrated closed-loop servo stopper motor, among some. At present, the company currently employs 200 people and has subsidiaries in China and Germany.

Following this acquisition, Servotronix will also continue to operate from its headquarters in Petah Tikva, Israel, and coordinate its global activity, including marketing, sales, and product development.

At the same time, the two parities established a strategic partnership to expand the development and sales of advanced motion control and automation systems globally and in China. This is the first collaboration of this type for Midea in Israel.

“This alliance will provide Servotronix with significant leverage for our global operations and put Servotronix in a leadership position in the field of robotics, control, and automation, with China being a major market in this field,” said Dr. Ilan Cohen, the president, CEO and founder of Servotronix.

“We are proud that Midea has recognized our success, and we are confident that this strategic alliance will benefit the company, our customers and our employees. Servotronix will continue its operations with even more enthusiasm and strength.” he further adds.

Established in 1968, Shenzhen-listed Midea manufacturers heating, ventilation and air-conditioning systems, robotics and industrial automation systems. The company generated over US$17 billion revenue in the first nine months of 2016 and has identified robotics and automation as an important growth market.

It has more than 200 subsidiaries, employs more than 130,000 people worldwide, and generated revenues of more than $17bn in the first nine months of 2016. It has identified robotics and automation as an important growth market and is stepping up its involvement in this sector. Midea has a company value of $28 billion and is listed on the Shenzen stock exchange, focuses on household goods, air-conditioning, robotics, and automation.

By Vivian Foo, Unicorn Media