MRO Magazine

Rexel Group acquires GE Supply

Paris, France -- The Rexel Group (Rexel), the world's leading distribution network of electrical supplies, and GE C...


Paris, France — The Rexel Group (Rexel), the world’s leading distribution network of electrical supplies, and GE Consumer & Industrial, a unit of General Electric, have signed an agreement for Rexel to acquire GE Supply, GE’s electrical distribution business.

The acquisition, for a total consideration of U.S. $725 million, will continue Rexel’s leadership in the consolidation of the electrical distribution industry.

Rexel is already a significant player in the U.S. $64 billion market for electrical products in the U.S. through Rexel Inc., which posted $2.5 billion in sales in 2005.

With U.S $2.2 billion in pro forma 2005 annual revenues for the transferred business to Rexel, GE Supply is a leading distributor of electrical products produced by GE and more than 200 other manufacturers. The business is headquartered in Shelton, Conn., and employs about 2,500 people in more than 150 locations around the world. GE Supply’s core electrical distribution activities operate mainly in the U.S.

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After the acquisition of GE Supply, Rexel will operate in the U.S. through a dual-banner strategy, serving an expanded customer base with a much larger product offering and reinforced network density. Rexel will benefit from GE Supply’s large project management experience and national footprint. Rexel will also gain expertise in the GE Supply’s highly attractive outsourced offering through the GE Supply Logistics and GE Production Services divisions.

Jean-Charles Pauze, chairman and CEO of Rexel said, “By welcoming this highly valuable company within the Group, Rexel will double its presence in the U.S. with nearly $5 billion in sales and reinforce its leadership in the world’s largest and fast growing electrical distribution market. The acquisition of GE Supply not only increases our presence in the U.S. but demonstrates Rexel’s ability to drive consolidation of the industry. This value enhancing investment is a logical step forward and validates the attractiveness of our business model.”

“The GE Supply team has done a great job of growing the business,” said James P. Campbell, president and CEO, GE Consumer & Industrial. “Rexel is committed to fostering GE Supply’s continued growth by providing support that will help the business expand its presence, products and services for their customers. It’s a great fit. The terms of this sale also ensure that GE Supply will remain a strategic distribution channel for GE products. This is a big win for us and for the customers that count on GE Supply to take care of all of their GE product needs.”

Upon closing, GE Supply will operate as a stand-alone organization and will report to the newly-created Rexel U.S. Holding group currently headed by Dick Waterman, Rexel Inc.’s executive vice-president and CEO. Senior vice-president and CEO of GE Supply Jeff Schaper will continue to operate the business.

The transaction is expected to close by early August 2006, subject to consent of Rexel’s senior lenders.

In the past 18 months, Rexel has expanded its global footprint through acquisitions of electrical distribution businesses in Europe and in the U.S., and has recently completed acquisitions with Electro-Material, the leading electrical wholesaler in Switzerland, ElettroBergamo (Italy) and Capitol Light and Supply (U.S.). Rexel was acquired in 2005 by an investor group including Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, Eurazeo and Merrill Lynch Global Private Equity.

For more information, visit Rexel’s web site at www.rexel.com and www.gesupply.com.