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United Tech Chairman Says Diebold Deal Unlikely

George David of United Technologies said Thursday the industrial conglomerate's takeover of ATM manufacturer Diebold is not likely to happen.

DANA POINT, Calif. (AP) -- The chairman and ex-CEO of United Technologies Corp. said Thursday the industrial conglomerate's takeover of ATM manufacturer Diebold Inc. may be unlikely.

"It just sits there," George David told investor analysts at a conference. "I think it's probably less likely rather than more likely at this stage."

George David, who spearheaded the deal shortly before he retired as CEO in April, told investor analysts at a conference that the deal is not likely to happen.

The offer still stands, but United Technologies is waiting for financial information from Diebold, David said. United Technologies Corp. is parent company of jet engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney, Otis elevator, Sikorsky Aircraft and other businesses.

Hartford, Conn.-based United Technologies made a $40-per-share cash offer, about $2.6 billion, for Diebold in February. Diebold rejected the offer.

Mike Jacobsen, a spokesman for Diebold in North Canton, Ohio, said company executives still believe the offer was "opportunistic and significantly undervalued the company."

Representatives of the two companies have not met to review financial information, he said.

Diebold reported earnings in August, the first time since early last year as regulators review the way the company reports revenue.

David criticized Diebold's management for failing to act on United Technologies' offer.

"I just think it's kind of a sad, actually in my opinion, repudiation of shareholder value," he said. "There were lots of promises about structure and margin increases and all those kinds of things from a management team that actually hasn't really done anything for shareholders for quite some time."

David said United Technologies has not been affected by the slowing commercial construction market.

"Commercial construction orders is a much advertised and telegraphed problem that we have not seen," he said.

Elevator orders for Otis in North America were up 7 percent in the first half of the year, though United Technologies expects a pullback in the second half of the year.

And commercial construction orders for Carrier in North America are up 3 percent in the first half of 2008, David said.

He said a crisis in financial services over the last year has spread across the industrial economy, "but not quite as rapidly or as seriously as the media would have us believe."

Shares of United Technologies fell 67 cents to $62.65 in midday trading. Diebold shed $2.62, or 7 percent, to $34.88.

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