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Siemens to buy RuggedCom for $382M

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Siemens has agreed to buy RuggedCom Inc. (RCM-T), the Canadian maker of data communications networks systems, for about $382 million in cash, to improve access to markets in North America and the Asia-Pacific region.

The deal, considered small for Europe's biggest engineering company, is its largest since Siemens took over Israeli solar thermal fields maker Solel for $418 million in 2009.

The German company said on Monday it would offer $33.00 per share to RuggedCom, which represents a premium of 26 percent to the company's closing on Friday.

RuggedCom, which had revenues of around $94 million US last year and employs 360 people, makes heavy-duty routers and ethernet cables specifically designed in challenging environments such as those found in electric power substations and smartgrids.

Anton Huber, Chief Executive of Siemens Industry Automation division, said the acquisition of RuggedCom would improve Siemens' router and switch products as well as improve access to markets in North America and the Asia-Pacific region.

The German company's portfolio of industrial ethernet networking components is enjoying above-average growth rates compared with the competition, he said without elaborating.

"It's not a large company and is a good move as Siemens will be able to reduce its cash pile," analyst Pascal Gottmann of Merck Finck said.

Siemen's offer had topped a recent $280-million offer from U.S. manufacturer Belden Inc. (BDC-N)

RuggedCom's board of directors will recommend shareholders to accept the offer, Siemens said.

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