UTC reigns in Chubb, to relocate HQ

Chubb prepares for future security firm acquisitions
Monday, September 1, 2003

HARTFORD, Conn. - United Technologies Corp. successfully completed its acquisition of Chubb Plc. in late July despite a slow start to acquiring shares of Chubb from stockholders.

After extending its stock-buying deadline by about three weeks, UTC managed to pick up 56 percent of the outstanding stock by its July 28 deadline. Company officials expect to complete full ownership of other remaining shares in the future.

Already the company is moving forward with plans to streamline operations. Within the next 12 months, company officials announced that Chubb’s headquarters will relocate from London to here, impacting about 40 employees.

“It makes it easier to coordinate an acquisition strategy” for the future, explained Paul Jackson, spokesman for United Technologies Corp.

Though the $1 billion acquisition of Chubb provides UTC with a solid foundation in the security field in multiple geographic markets, UTC’s chief executive officer George David told the Associated Press recently that he plans to double the size of Chubb over the next five years.

Much of that growth is expected to come through buying existing companies in the security market, a move industry analysts anticipated all along when UTC announced in June its offer to buy Chubb.

While acquisitions will play an important roll in growing UTC’s security business, organic growth will also be key, said Jackson.

“Part of the strategy is to try to leverage the very extensive customer bases we have with Otis Elevator and Carrier,” a heating, ventilation and air conditioning system company, he said. “We have products in virtually every building in the world and that should help Chubb.”

Now that UTC has closed on buying Chubb, it plans to establish Chubb as its seventh business unit. Other units include Otis, Carrier, UTC Power, Pratt & Whitney, Hamilton Sundstrand and Sikorsky.

By the end of August, UTC also expected to delist Chubb from the London Stock Exchange. Chubb went public in November of 2000 after it was spun off from conglomerate Williams Plc., but its time as a public company has been unsteady. Most recently the stock was trading at slightly more than $1 a share.

Besides announcing intentions to relocate Chubb’s headquarters, UTC announced several new members to Chubb’s executive team. Two of those key officials include Olivier Robert, the senior vice president of engineering and operations at Otis Elevator, who has taken over as president of Chubb. Akhil Johri, director of investor relations for UTC, will become the company’s chief financial officer.

Chubb’s former chief executive officer, Jonathan Findler, will remain on board for a transition period.