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Petards UK Government and Commercial software business sold to BAE Systems

Deal Release:

Petards UK Government and Commercial software business sold to BAE Systems

22 Jan 2008

ICON advises Petards on sale of software business to BAE.

ICON Corporate Finance has advised Petards Group Plc, a developer of advanced surveillance systems, on the sale of its Government and Commercial software business to BAE Systems Plc.

The acquired business comprised the Universal Video Management System (UVMS), which manages CCTV data within casinos, train stations, arenas and shopping centres, and Advantage command and control software, together with the legacy software products 2nd Eyes, COBYT and Argus.

Under the terms of the deal, Petards will continue to be able to exploit UVMS in the USA casino marketplace having been granted exclusive licensing rights. Petards have also retained its other security products, including the Hawk camera, which is used for licence plate recognition, and its Swift wireless cameras.

ICON was appointed as corporate finance advisers to the AIM listed Petards in November 2007 to assist in the development and implementation of the Board’s strategy. The Group will now focus its operations on a more limited range of technologies and markets. The proceeds will be used to reduce Group debt and will also be invested in its remaining operations.

Eddie Harding of ICON Corporate Finance said: “We identified interest from a number of parties but BAE represented the best offer for the UVMS business both financially and in terms of strategic fit. As a result of the transaction, the Group now has a stronger balance sheet and is better placed to focus on its remaining operations in 2008."

Middlesex based Petards, which has two sites in the US, is focused on high technology security and surveillance solutions.

BAE’s systems are built for air, land and naval forces as well as commercial operations, such as IT and customer support services. The group has 96,000 employees around the world and reported sales of £15 billion in 2006.

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