On Tuesday, March 29, Canadian-based global engineering firm Stantec Inc. confirmed rumors it is in the process of acquiring water resources design-build giant MWH Global Inc. for $795 million in an all-cash deal. With the acquisition of MWH and its 6,800 worldwide employees, Stantec will gain a position as a global leader in water resources infrastructure while earning greater presence in key targeted geographies, including the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South and Central America, Europe and the Middle East.
“MWH brings a global presence and reputation in water infrastructure that will advance Stantec’s position as a top-tier design firm within the highly attractive global water market,” says Bob Gomes, Stantec President and Chief Executive Officer (pictured above (left) with MWH chairman and CEO Alan Krause). “Together, we share a commitment to our communities and have the combined talent to support the most technically advanced clients and projects locally and around the world.”
MWH has a network of approximately 187 offices in 26 countries. The firm has a history of engaging in engineering, construction and management consulting for some of the most technically significant water and natural resources projects in the world, including the Panama Canal Third Set of Locks Project.
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“We are excited to join the expertise and experience of Stantec and MWH in a transaction that will enable us to thrive and grow amidst an increasingly complex industry landscape by strengthening our combined ability to solve the most pressing water, transportation and infrastructure challenges today,” says Alan Krause, MWH chairman and CEO. “Our highly complementary cultures, shared approach to client service and extended global reach should yield multiple benefits for our clients, employees and the communities we serve.”
Key members of the management team of MWH, including the presidents of key business units, will be joining Stantec in significant leadership positions after the Acquisition closes. Alan Krause and David Barnes, MWH CFO, are also committed to joining Stantec to ensure a smooth and successful integration.
The Acquisition is aligned with Stantec’s growth strategy of building a top-tier presence in the markets it chooses to serve. Historically, Stantec’s acquisition strategy has been focused on acquisitions in North America to develop a mature presence across its business portfolio. Stantec has concurrently positioned itself to be able to execute on the right opportunity at the right time to expand its geographic footprint and service capabilities to further diversify its industry leading platform.
The Acquisition must be approved by holders of at least two thirds of the MWH shares at a special meeting of MWH shareholders expected to be held in April 2016. The Acquisition is subject to certain customary conditions, including approval under the U.S. Hart-Scott-Rodino Anti-Trust Improvements Act. Stantec anticipates the Acquisition to close in the second quarter of 2016.
More information on the financial details of the deal can be found on the Stantec website.