United Technologies to Buy GE’s Security Business

ge-logoUnited Technologies Corp. on Thursday said it will acquire General Electric Co.’s fire detection and security business for $1.82 billion.

United Technologies said the deal will strengthen its own security operations in North America. Its fire and security portfolio currently includes products such as portable fire extinguishers, consumer security systems, and gas and flame detection products.

The company, based in Hartford, said the transaction should be earnings neutral in 2010, due to restructuring and transaction costs, but will likely generate growth in 2011 and beyond.

For GE, the sale advances the company’s efforts to shed noncore assets and focus on its core strategic businesses, a company spokeswoman said.

The nation’s biggest cable TV systems operator, Comcast Corp. is in talks about buying a 51 percent stake in NBC Universal, the owner of NBC television and Universal Studios. GE owns 80 percent of NBC Universal while 20 percent is held by Vivendi SA of France.

Shares of United Technologies rose 52 cents to $67.49 in premarket trading Thursday, while General Electric shares fell 5 cents to $15.78.

GE Security, which is based in Bradenton, Fla., supplies technologies such as its Vigilant-brand fire alarm systems, along with intrusion alarms and video surveillance and access control systems.

The business has eight manufacturing facilities and about 4,700 employees in 26 countries.

UTC also runs jet engine maker Pratt & Whitney, Otis elevator, Sikorsky Aircraft and other businesses.

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