URS completes buy-out of Scott Wilson

US giant follows up June equity stake with full purchase of contractor

Scott Wilson is working on the Haramain Rail Project
Scott Wilson is working on the Haramain Rail Project

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URS Corporation, the US-based design and engineering giant, has completed its acquisition of Scott Wilson Group plc, three months after it agreed its initial US$242 million stake.

Shareholders in UK based Scott Wilson, who approved the deal on 30th July, will receive 290 pence in cash per share. The total equity value paid by URS for all outstanding shares equals approximately £218 million, or $336 million.

The acquisition awaits subsequent UK court approval and regulatory approvals in various jurisdictions.

“The acquisition of Scott Wilson opens the door to numerous new opportunities for URS in major international infrastructure markets,” said Martin M. Koffel, URS’s chairman and chief executive.

These opportunities will derive from Scott Wilson’s network of 80 offices around the world, including offices in key regional centres such as London, Hong Kong, New Delhi, Warsaw and Dubai, and more than 5,500 employees.

Scott Wilson posted revenues of approximately £340 million for its fiscal year, ending 2nd May, and net income of £13.6 million, which equate to approximately $523.6 million and $20.9 million, respectively.

URS provides services for infrastructure projects involving air and surface transportation systems, industrial and commercial facilities, and pollution control and hazardous waste management programs. It’s market capitalisation is around US$3.229 billion.

Scott Wilson’s operations will be incorporated into the Infrastructure & Environment business segment of URS. The acquisition awaits subsequent UK court approval and regulatory approvals in various jurisdictions.

“URS now is among the top ten U.K. engineering firms by revenue, with capabilities in critical infrastructure markets, including transit, high speed rail, roads and bridges, airports, and ports and harbours,” added Koffel.

“We also have expanded our capabilities in other key geographies outside of the UK and Continental Europe, such as China and India, two of the fastest growing economies in the world.”

Hugh Blackwood, former group chief executive of Scott Wilson, joins URS as a Vice President of URS Corporation and senior vice president of International Operations. He will oversee from London URS’ Infrastructure & Environment business for the UK/Ireland, Europe, Middle East, India and China.

“From today, Scott Wilson becomes part of URS Corporation. We are looking forward to providing our clients with access to a larger global footprint and the ability to meet their needs across a wider range of services and sectors, including the nuclear power market, which is a key strength for URS. Our employees will be able to participate in larger and more complex projects, as well as benefit from further investment in new areas of expertise.”

Scott Wilson’s shares stopped trading on the London Stock Exchange as of the close of trading on 8th September. The transaction is not expected to have a significant impact on URS’s fiscal year 2010 results, but the company expects that it will be accretive to earnings per share in fiscal year 2011 on a GAAP basis.

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