Exide Completes Acquisition of GNB & Undergoes Name Change

February 01, 2001 by Jeff Shepard

Exide Corp. has completed its acquisition of GNB Technologies, the global battery business of Pacific Dunlop Limited, for $368 million. Exide will now conduct business under the name Exide Technologies and will seek shareholder approval at its 2001 annual meeting for the name change.

The acquisition is designed to allow Exide to reenter the North American industrial battery business, broaden its geographic reach, and attain significant efficiencies in its North American transportation business.

Exide has financed the $368 million purchase, as well as associated fees and expenses, through a $250 million add-on to its existing senior secured credit facility, $100 million from the securitization of GNB accounts receivables and the issuance of four million shares of Exide common stock to Pacific Dunlop. The company also agreed to issue warrants for up to 1.3 million shares with an exercise price of $8.99 per share in conjunction with its senior secured credit facility. Pacific Dunlop will hold an approximate 15 percent interest in Exide.

Robert A. Lutz, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, "There are tremendous synergies between the two companies, with very little overlap when it comes to markets or customers. With the GNB acquisition we will reenter the fast growing North American industrial business. We will quickly integrate GNB with Exide, and execute profit improvement plans, particularly in the combined North American aftermarket business, to rationalize product lines, manufacturing capacity, distribution systems, and administrative activities."