Acquisition brings ECA Group and iXblue under one roof
Groupe Gorgé on 29 September announced the complementary acquisition of iXblue to operate alongside ECA Group as a ‘European high-tech industrial champion in the fields of robotics, maritime, navigation, aerospace and photonics’.
The deal creates a combined headcount of 1,500 staff with annual turnover of €250 million ($245.5 million), Group Gorgé added.
Shephard reported in December 2021 that iXblue was looking for investors from the French capital markets, with indications of interest from French private equity firm HLD and major bank Crédit Agricole.
The two companies have a history of cooperation in naval technology programmes, with a recent example in Poland combining iXblue's Gaps M7 USBL positioning system and ECA Group's R7 ROV.
With its portfolio of USVs and navigation systems, iXblue is involved in multiple European naval programmes such as the Type 212CD submarine for Germany and Norway, the Squadron 2020 corvette for Finland and the FDI frigate for France and Greece.
ECA is known for its autonomous vessels, with a particular expertise in mine warfare.
‘Together, iXblue and ECA Group will provide customers with a unique offer ranging from components to complex systems to support critical missions in severe environments,’ Groupe Gorgé claimed.
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