Universal Electronics Buys Chinese Remote Maker

CYPRESS, Calif. (AP) -- Universal Electronics Inc., which makes remote controls and other wireless devices for home use, said Thursday it has acquired Chinese remote control maker Enson Assets Ltd. for $110 million.

Universal Electronics Chairman and CEO Paul Arling said his company has had a six-year working relationship with Enson subsidiaries. He said the acquisition positions Universal Electronics for international growth opportunities. Sony, Panasonic and Toshiba are among Enson's customers, he said.

Universal Electronics forecast that the acquisition will add $140 million to its sales and earnings of $1 per share in the 2011 fiscal year, which begins in March.

"We expect this acquisition to place us squarely in the lead as the provider of wireless control devices into the consumer electronics market," said Chairman and CEO Paul Arling. "Additionally, this acquisition significantly expands our product range, which will enable us to further penetrate the growing Asian and Latin American subscription broadcast markets."

The Cypress, Calif.-based company paid $95 million in cash and delivered 1.46 million shares to complete the deal. It received net assets of $68.5 million, including around $15 million in cash.

The company also reported quarterly earnings rose to $4.7 million, or 34 cents per share, from year-ago profit of $4.2 million, or 30 cents per share. Sales slipped to $70 million from $83.2 million, but the company trimmed some expenses to offset the decline.

"Our business faced some headwinds in the developed markets, most specifically in North American consumer electronics, but fared particularly well in developing economies," said Arling.

Universal Electronics shares rose $2.76, or nearly 13 percent, to $24.00 in after-hours trading on the news. Earlier the stock closed up 41 cents at $21.24.
More in Industry 4.0