GreatStar (巨星科技, 002444.SZ), a Hangzhou-based industrial tool developer, said on December 20 that it plans to buy TESA Group, a Swiss manufacturer of precision measurement tools, for around €40 million (US$44 million).
GreatStar, which is also listed on SIX Swiss Exchange, plans to sell part of its global depository receipt (GDR) to finance the transaction, according to an exchange filing.
GreatStar will transact with Hexagon, an equity-holding entity which is specially established for the deal and owns 100% of TESA’s stock.
Following the deal, GreatStar will acquire full ownership of the assets belonging to TESA Group, including a 100% stake in TESA Precision Measurement Instruments Sarl and its assets in China, the United States and France, said the filing.
Tesa Group is based in Renens, Switzerland and reportedly churns out nanometer-grade measuring instruments for industrial use.
GreatStar said its purchase of TESA will grant it access to the technologies behind high-precision measuring tools, which are necessary to the processing of robotic parts.
If the acquisition is given the greenlight, the Hangzhou-based firm will possess a richer product portfolio and a wider network of industrial customers.
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According to its plan, it will combine the engineering expertise of TESA’s Swiss staff with a sophisticated R&D system in China, so as to manufacture more measurement devices tailored to Chinese market demand.
A deeper move into robotics
Notably, this is not the first time GreatStar has set its sights on further tapping into robotics.
It shelled out 20.40 million yuan (US$2.8 million) as early as 2014 to obtain a 21.94% stake in Guozi Robot, becoming the Hangzhou-headquartered AMR company’s second-largest shareholder.
According to the website of China Securities Regulatory Commission, Guozi Robot had signed a pre-listing tutoring agreement with Huatai United Securities, a securities brokerage firm, in September 2020.
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This is the first step of the company’s journey to go public on the STAR market of Shanghai Stock Exchange.
In addition to its investment, GreatStar itself is pivoting into robotics, with attempts at diversifying its product lineup.
In a reply to investors on a stock interactive platform on November 29 this year, the firm said it has been doubling down on the Lidar business since 2016, targeting primarily industrial and mobile robotics.