Harris, Stratex announce merger plans
Stratex Networks and Harris’ Microwave Communications division will be combined to form a new company called Harris Stratex Networks to deliver wireless transmission solutions globally, officials for the firms announced yesterday.
Boasting $600 million in combined revenues, the new company will be well positioned in the burgeoning wireless-transmission market. Currently, Harris and Stratex combine to claim 48% of the North American market and 15% of the global market today, according to the companies. During a press conference yesterday, Stratex Networks Chairman Charles Kissner said the merger is very complementary, noting that there is only 5% overlap between the companies’ product-distribution channels.
“From the day of signing, Harris Stratex becomes the leading independent provider of wireless transmission systems,” said Kissner, who will serve as chairman of the new company. “This is the next logical step, and the timing is right.”
Howard Lance, Harris’ chairman, president and CEO, echoed this sentiment.
“This really is a game-changing strategy, and I think it has the potential to reshape the industry in terms of wireless-transmission systems,” said Lance, who will serve on the Harris Stratex board of directors.
Guy Campbell, president of Harris’ microwave division, will be CEO of Harris Stratex, while current Stratex CEO Thomas Waechter will be the new company’s chief operating officer.
Harris Stratex’s official headquarters will be the current headquarters of Harris’ microwave division in Research Triangle Park, N.C., but headquarters functions also will be conducted at the current Stratex headquarters in San Jose, Calif.
Approved by both companies’ boards of directors, the agreement calls for Harris to contribute its microwave division and $25 million cash in exchange for about 56% ownership of the new company. Stratex shareholders will exchange their existing stock for 44% of Harris Stratex. Subject to regulatory and shareholder approval, the deal is expected to close in four months.