E.ON successfully completes voluntary public takeover offer

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  • Acceptance rate of 9.4 percent after expiration of the additional offer period
  • Total share of innogy held by E.ON after completion of the transaction of 86.2 percent
  • Preparation of the integration in transparent and fair way in cooperation with innogy

E.ON has successfully completed the voluntary public takeover offer to innogy minority shareholders .At the end of the additional acceptance period on July 25, 2018, 9.4 percent of shareholders decided to sell their innogy shares to E.ON. Including RWE’s 76.8 percent stake in innogy, E.ON will hold 86.2 percent of the innogy shares upon completion of the transaction, subject to receipt of official approvals. E.ON therefore does not expect completion before mid-2019.

Marc Spieker, CFO of E.ON: “We are very satisfied with the result. The agreed acquisition of RWE’s majority stake will already provide us with the necessary means to integrate innogy into E.ON once the transaction has been completed. We are very pleased that we were able to convince many additional innogy shareholders of our offer.” Spieker also pointed out that, as expected, some funds could not tender their shares due to internal restrictions, for example index-linked funds that contain innogy shares.

With the successful result of the voluntary public takeover offer, E.ON now intends to take the next steps towards implementation of the transaction. “We are very pleased that we will soon be able to prepare the integration planning together with colleagues from innogy”, says Spieker. Mid July, E.ON signed an agreement with innogy to cooperate on the planned integration. “We want to and will work openly, transparently and fairly with innogy to create together a new E.ON that is fully customer-oriented with intelligent networks and innovative customer solutions. On the one hand, we will continue to leverage the synergy potential of €600 to €800 million and on the other hand, we will tap growth potential for the new E.ON,” Spieker underlined.

Novartis announces CEO Joseph Jimenez to retire from Novartis in 2018. Vasant Narasimhan appointed CEO, effective February 1, 2018.

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Joseph Jimenez, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Novartis, has informed the Board of Directors of his desire to step down as CEO in 2018, after eight years in position. The Board of Directors has appointed Vasant (Vas) Narasimhan, M.D., Global Head of Drug Development and Chief Medical Officer, as CEO of Novartis, effective February 1, 2018. Dr. Narasimhan is a member of the Executive Committee and joined Novartis in 2005.

Mr. Jimenez, who has been CEO since 2010, joined the company in 2007. He first led the Consumer Health Division, and then held the position of Division Head, Novartis Pharmaceuticals. Mr. Jimenez will step down as CEO, effective January 31, 2018, and will be available for advice and support at the request of the Chairman of the Board of Directors or the CEO until he retires from Novartis on August 31, 2018.

Joerg Reinhardt, Chairman of the Novartis Board of Directors, commented, “I would like to express my sincere appreciation for Joe’s achievements as CEO. During his tenure, Joe focused Novartis on leading global businesses, while divesting non-core divisions. Under his leadership the innovation pipeline was rejuvenated, and we successfully navigated the patent expirations of our two largest products. We anticipate a smooth transition as Joe built a strong leadership team and mentored his successor. Novartis will be well positioned to continue its momentum.”

Mr. Jimenez said, “Both from a professional and a personal perspective, this is the right moment to hand the leadership reins of the company to Vas. Our strong pipeline and the strategic moves we have taken to focus the company have put Novartis on a strong path for the future. On the personal side, after 10 wonderful years in Switzerland, my family is ready to return to Silicon Valley and the US. I’m confident that Vas will be an excellent successor.”

Dr. Narasimhan has held numerous leadership positions across Novartis in commercial, drug development and strategy roles. Prior to his current role he served as Head of Development for Novartis Pharmaceuticals. Before joining Novartis in 2005, he worked at McKinsey & Company. He received his medical degree from Harvard Medical School in the US and obtained a master’s degree in public policy from Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. In addition, he holds a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from the University of Chicago, also in the US. During and after his medical studies, he worked extensively on a range of health issues in developing countries. Dr. Narasimhan is an elected member of the US National Academy of Medicine. He is a US citizen born in 1976, married with 2 children, and lives in Basel, Switzerland.

Mr. Reinhardt added, “The strength of Novartis is our ability to drive science-based innovation. Vas is deeply anchored in medical science, has significant experience in managing the interfaces between Research and Development and commercial units and has strong business acumen with a track record of outstanding achievements. As a physician, he has a strong patient focus and a genuine humane perspective and care for the mission and values of Novartis. As a result, the Board of Directors is confident that Vas is the right choice to lead Novartis on our expected next growth phase, driving innovation and further strengthening our competitive position.”

Dr. Narasimhan said, “I would like to congratulate Joe and express my gratitude to Joe, Joerg, and the Board of Directors. I feel honored and humbled to be asked to lead Novartis. We will continue our legacy of bringing leading innovation to patients around the world. With our recent launches, our strong pipeline, broad capabilities, world-class leadership team, and committed people, I am very confident about our future.”

Rohde & Schwarz and MediaTek collaborate on mmWave OTA measurement technologies

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Rohde & Schwarz, a leading manufacturer of test & measurement solutions and communications and broadcasting equipment, announced a strategic collaboration with MediaTek to accelerate the development of mmWave OTA measurement technologies.

MediaTek, as a leading mobile platform provider, has placed major investments in 5G and is among the key global brands readying solutions for the launch for the upcoming 5G commercial rollout. To successfully launch 5G, several key technology developments need to be accelerated, some of which are massive MIMO antenna arrays, algorithm design, and Over-the-Air (OTA) testing.

In 5G mmWave communication systems, there are some challenges to be solved to ensure seamless user experiences. For example, high path loss and shadowing effects could significantly decrease signal strength. To improve signals, MediaTek is working on chipset development that includes beamforming antenna array design technology. To ensure quality and the characteristics of each beam, it is important to have a testing environment to measure multiple beam streams precisely and a reliable and speedy chamber is required. In this joint cooperation, MediaTek leverages Rohde & Schwarz OTA solution to improve measurement technology.

Rohde & Schwarz provides a complete 5G mmWave OTA turnkey solution based on the R&S ATS series to perform the testing. The R&S ATS series consists of a rack-sized shielded RF test chamber on castors, suitable mounts for test objects and sensors, and a wideband measurement antenna, which covers the whole frequency range. Using the associated test and measurement equipment and the antenna measurement software, radiation patterns of 5G antenna arrays can be measured extremely precisely in just a few minutes.

A positioning laser supports precise orientation of test objects. All this makes the R&S ATS series antenna test system the ideal test environment for fast and accurate repeatable measurements. The R&S SMW200A and R&S FSW43 provide up to 40 GHz operating frequency and 2 GHz modulation/demodulation bandwidth. The R&S ZVA40 vector network analyzer supports up to four independence signal sources for the four-port configuration allowing parallel signal output. The R&S ZVA series is an ideal choice for demanding measurements tasks in the lab and in production. Together, these advanced instruments ensure the ideal test platform for fast and accurate repeatable measurements, from R&D through to deployment.

Alexander Pabst, Vice President Systems & Projects at Rohde & Schwarz, says: “We are pleased to cooperate with MediaTek for OTA development to ensure 5G product testing requirements. Rohde & Schwarz is committed to accompany the evolution path from 4G to 5G with innovative test and measurement solutions.”

Walmart establishes strategic partnership with Microsoft to further accelerate digital innovation in retail

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The five-year agreement will leverage a broad base of the cloud, AI and IoT solutions for enterprise-wide use

BENTONVILLE, Ark. and REDMOND, Wa. – Walmart Inc. (NYSE: WMT) announced it is establishing a strategic partnership with Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) to further accelerate Walmart’s digital transformation in retail, empower its associates worldwide and make shopping faster and easier for millions of customers around the world. Through this partnership, Walmart has chosen Microsoft as its preferred and strategic cloud provider tapping into the full range of Microsoft’s cloud solutions.

“Walmart’s commitment to technology is centered around creating incredibly convenient ways for customers to shop and empowering associates to do their best work,” said Doug McMillon, Walmart CEO. “Walmart is a people led, tech empowered company, and we’re excited about what this technology partnership will bring for our customers and associates. Whether it’s combined with our agile cloud platform or leveraging machine learning and artificial intelligence to work smarter, we believe Microsoft will be a strong partner in driving our ability to innovate even further and faster.”

“Walmart is a pioneering retailer, committed to empowering its employees and delivering the best experience for its customers wherever they are,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. “The world’s leading companies run on our cloud, and I’m thrilled to partner with Walmart to accelerate their digital transformation with Microsoft Azure and Microsoft 365.”

Walmart is already using Microsoft services for critical applications and workloads and is now embarking on a broad set of cloud innovation projects that leverage machine learning, artificial intelligence, and data platform solutions for a wide range of external customer-facing services and internal business applications. The flexible, secure and rapidly scalable global technology will significantly accelerate Walmart’s ability to execute in three key areas:

Digital transformation: The investment in Microsoft Azure is a continuation of Walmart’s cloud journey and extends across Walmart’s family of brands and international businesses – allowing them to leverage Microsoft’s public cloud to:

  • Capitalize on depth and breadth of Microsoft’s compute capacity
  • Ability to seamlessly manage workloads in an elastic environment
  • Leverage expanded access to new toolsets to innovate faster
  • Drive a more cloud native environment and therefore continue to manage cost 

In a five-year agreement, Walmart has selected the full range of Microsoft cloud solutions, including Microsoft Azure and Microsoft 365 for enterprise-wide use to help standardize across the company’s family of brands. As part of the partnership, Walmart and Microsoft engineers will collaborate on the assessment, development, and support phase of moving hundreds of existing applications to cloud native architectures. For example, to grow and enhance the online experience, the company will migrate a significant portion of walmart.com and samsclub.com to Azure, including its cloud-powered check-out enabling Walmart to grow with rising customer demand and reach more global markets than ever before.

Innovation: Whether it’s a continued focus on site availability and speed, or the ability to quickly and seamlessly launch new features, customers will continue to see Walmart innovating to save them time and money across the shopping journey. There are also massive benefits to operating at scale as Walmart builds a global IoT platform on Azure – from connected HVAC and refrigeration units to reduce energy usage in thousands of U.S. stores or applying machine learning when routing thousands of trucks in the supply chain.

Changing how we work: Walmart continues to foster a curious, collaborative, accountable, and agile culture to position the company for further growth. To do that, it’s critical to have tools that encourage those skills and traits. Through this partnership, Walmart is investing in its people with a phased rollout of Microsoft 365 providing associates with the productivity tools to foster a culture of collaboration, creativity and communication. Microsoft’s modern workplace platform supports connected teams and breaks down silos – with access to a full range of tools including Microsoft Workplace Analytics, Microsoft Stream, and Microsoft OneDrive, Walmart associates will have access to leading collaboration, productivity and sharing tools so they can save time and work better.

Advent Closes Investment in 80 Percent Stake in Walmart Brazil

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Walmart Inc. to retain 20 percent stake

BOSTON and BENTONVILLE, Ark. – Walmart Inc. (NYSE:WMT) and Advent International announced the closing of Advent’s previously announced investment in an 80 percent equity stake in Walmart Brazil. Walmart Inc. has retained a 20 percent stake in the business.

Advent is a global private equity fund with a strong local presence and extensive experience in retail investment both in Brazil and internationally. Since the opening of its São Paulo office in 1997, the fund has invested in 30 Brazilian companies from various sectors. Advent has been active in the retail, consumer and leisure segments worldwide for 28 years and has completed 75 investments in 22 countries.

About Walmart

Walmart Inc. (NYSE: WMT) helps people around the world save money and live better – anytime and anywhere – in retail stores, online, and through their mobile devices. Each week, nearly 270 million customers and members visit our more than 11,700 stores under 65 banners in 28 countries and eCommerce websites. With fiscal year 2018 revenue of $500.3 billion, Walmart employs approximately 2.3 million associates worldwide. Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity.

About Walmart Brazil

Having a presence in Brazil for the last 22 years, Walmart Brazil has today 438 stores in 18 states, with 55,000 associates. In 2017, the company’s total sales were more than R$25 billion.

About Advent International

Founded in 1984, Advent International is one of the largest and most experienced global private equity investors. The firm has invested in over 330 private equity transactions in 41 countries and as of December 31, 2017, had $42 billion in assets under management. With offices on four continents, Advent has established a globally integrated team of over 190 investment professionals across North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia. The firm focuses on investments in five core sectors, including business and financial services; healthcare; industrial; retail, consumer and leisure; and technology, media and telecom. After more than 30 years dedicated to international investing, Advent remains committed to partnering with management teams to deliver sustained revenue and earnings growth for its portfolio companies.

About Advent International in Brazil

Advent International has been present in Brazil for more than 20 years. During this time, it has invested in 30 Brazilian companies, always with a strategy focused on revenue growth and operational excellence. Advent’s Brazilian investments have included several retail companies such as Dufry, the largest global travel retailer, Quero-Quero, Allied, International Meal Company and Fortbras.

AAR Mobility Systems Awarded $25.3 Million in Task Orders from USAF to Produce and Repair 463L Cargo Pallets

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CADILLAC, Michigan, AR (NYSE: AIR) Mobility Systems has been awarded task orders valued at $25.3 million from the U.S. Air Force for the production and repair of 463L cargo pallets. The cargo pallets will be manufactured and repaired in Cadillac. The two task orders are expected to be completed by June 30, 2019, and are tied to a previously awarded contract, which brings the total value to $143 million.

“Mobility Systems takes pride in being the sole manufacturer and authorized repair center for the 463L pallets for the U.S. Air Force. These two task orders ensure that the current inventory stays fully operational while also increasing inventory by up to 6,000 new pallets,” said Jeffery Jackson, Vice President, Business Development, AAR Mobility Systems.

AAR Mobility Systems has been providing 463L systems cargo pallets to the U.S. Armed Forces since the early 1960s. The 463L USAF design uses a lightweight balsa wood core that continues to provide unparalleled strength-to-weight performance and reliability compared to alternative commercial pallet designs.

About AAR Mobility Systems

AAR Mobility Systems is a leading global supplier of rapid deployment equipment, including mobile tactical shelters, pallets and expeditionary containers that enhance the military’s ability to mobilize, deploy, maneuver and sustain forces. AAR Mobility also manufactures large lightweight structural assemblies and platforms that support mission essential functions. Products are supported through a network of service centers, field service teams and strategic partners. More information can be found at www.aarmobilitysystems.com.

Cisco Announces Intent to Acquire Duo Security

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Acquisition Will Help Accelerate Cisco’s Intent-Based Networking Strategy, Allowing Customers to Securely Connect Users to Any Application on Any Network

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) announced its intent to acquire privately-held Duo Security, headquartered in Ann Arbor, Mich. Duo Security is the leading provider of unified access security and multi-factor authentication delivered through the cloud. Duo Security’s solution verifies the identity of users and the health of their devices before granting them access to applications – helping prevent cybersecurity breaches. Integration of Cisco’s network, device and cloud security platforms with Duo Security’s zero-trust authentication and access products will enable Cisco customers to easily and securely connect users to any application on any networked device.

Under the terms of the agreement, Cisco will pay $2.35 billion in cash and assumed equity awards for Duo Security’s outstanding shares, warrants and equity incentives on a fully-diluted basis.

“In today’s multicloud world, the modern workforce is connecting to critical business applications both on- and off-premise,” said David Goeckeler, executive vice president and general manager of Cisco’s networking and security business. “IT teams are responsible for protecting hundreds of different perimeters that span anywhere a user makes an access decision. Duo’s zero-trust authentication and access products integrated with our network, device and cloud security platforms will enable our customers to address the complexity and challenges that stem from multi-and hybrid-cloud environments.”

Business-critical data and applications today are accessed by customers, partners and employees from a multitude of locations and networks, both secure and open, using company-issued and personal devices. Attackers know that one of the most effective ways to access enterprise systems is through compromising user passwords or devices. According to the 2017 Verizon Data Breach Report, the majority of hacking related breaches involve stolen or weak passwords. Acknowledging this, Cisco and Duo Security are closely aligned in the approach of designing infrastructure for the extended enterprise where users, devices and applications are the center of the modern security architecture.

The acquisition of Duo Security will:

Extend intent-based networking into multicloud environments. Cisco currently provides on-premises network access control via its Identity Services Engine (ISE) product. Duo’s software as a service-based (SaaS) model will be integrated with Cisco ISE to extend ISE to provide cloud-delivered application access control.
Simplify policy for cloud security. By verifying user and device trust, Duo will add trusted identity awareness into Cisco’s Secure Internet Gateway, Cloud Access Security Broker, Enterprise Mobility Management, and several other cloud-delivered products.

Expands endpoint visibility coverage. Cisco’s in-depth visibility of over 180 million managed devices will be augmented by Duo’s broad visibility of mobile and unmanaged devices.

“Our partnership is the product of the rapid evolution of the IT landscape alongside a modernizing workforce, which has completely changed how organizations must think about security,” said Dug Song, Duo Security’s co-founder and chief executive officer. “Cisco created the modern IT infrastructure, and together we will rapidly accelerate our mission of securing access for all users, with any device, connecting to any application, on any network. By joining forces with the world’s largest networking and enterprise security company, we have a unique opportunity to drive change at a massive scale, and reshape the industry.”

The acquisition is expected to close during the first quarter of Cisco’s fiscal year 2019, subject to customary closing conditions and required regulatory approvals. Duo Security, which will continue to be led by Song, will join Cisco’s Networking and Security business led by EVP and GM David Goeckeler.

About Duo Security

Duo Security helps defend organizations against data breaches by making security easy and effective. Duo Beyond, the company’s category defining zero-trust security platform, enables organizations to provide trusted access to all of their critical applications, for any user, from anywhere, and with any device. The company is a trusted partner to more than 12,000 customers globally, including Dresser-Rand, Etsy, Facebook, K-Swiss, Random House, Yelp, Zillow, Paramount Pictures, and more. Founded in Michigan, Duo has offices in Ann Arbor and Detroit, as well as growing hubs in Austin, Texas; San Mateo, California; and London, UK. Visit Duo.com to find out more.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release may be deemed to contain forward-looking statements, which are subject to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements regarding the acquisition enabling Cisco customers to securely connect users to any application on any networked device, Duo’s unified access security and multi-factor authentication helping Cisco accelerate priority areas across its networking and security portfolio, the expected benefits to Cisco and its customers from completing the acquisition, and plans regarding Duo personnel. Readers are cautioned that these forward-looking statements are only predictions and may differ materially from actual future events or results due a variety of factors, including, among other things, that conditions to the closing of the transaction may not be satisfied, the potential impact on the business of Duo due to the uncertainty about the acquisition, the retention of employees of Duo and the ability of Cisco to successfully integrate Duo and to achieve expected benefits, business and economic conditions and growth trends in the networking industry, customer markets and various geographic regions, global economic conditions and uncertainties in the geopolitical environment and other risk factors set forth in Cisco’s most recent reports on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q. Any forward-looking statements in this release are based on limited information currently available to Cisco, which is subject to change, and Cisco will not necessarily update the information.