2002-03-08 00:00:00.0

Merloni Elettrodomestici completes GDA (Hotpoint) acquisition

Marco Milani becomes new CEO of GDA

Merloni Elettrodomestici today completed its acquisition of 50% of GDA, the UK’s leading manufacturer of domestic appliances through its Hotpoint brand. The other 50% of GDA is owned by General Electric. GDA’s new CEO will be the current general manager of Merloni Elettrodomestici, Marco Milani, who has already worked for a number of years in London managing the company’s UK operations. The completion, which comes just over two months after the agreement with Marconi was signed on 21st December, follows authorization for the deal received earlier this week from the European Commission. Hotpoint is the leading white goods brand in Great Britain and the Republic of Ireland with turnover of around €810m and a market share of around 23%. The company is one of Europe’s most efficient service organizations and has four production plants making fridges, cookers, washing machines and dryers at Peterborough (also GDA’s headquarters), Blythe Bridge, Kinmel Park and Yate respectively. The acquisition enables Merloni Elettrodomestici to consolidate itself as Europe’s third largest producer in the sector whilst moving into the top spot in the UK, Western Europe’s largest market. The deal was financed out of existing resources and bank facilities. The company’s strong performance in 2001 plus its strong cash generation and current debt to equity ratio, standing at 0.37x at the year end, allow the group to maintain a sound financial structure.

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