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UTAC CERAM and Millbrook set to join forces

Posted on 15 Dec 2020 and read 477 times
UTAC CERAM and Millbrook set to join forcesBedfordshire-based Millbrook and the French group UTAC CERAM, both key partners to automotive customers in Europe and around the world, have reached an agreement to merge their operations to create a market-leading group in vehicle testing, homologation and emerging technologies for autonomous, connected and electric vehicles (EVs).

The transaction is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2021, subject to the normal regulatory clearances. The combined group will draw on significant technological assets and technical expertise to meet the rapidly changing environment facing the automotive industry.

IT will generate multiple synergies, creating a leader in complementary markets, combining high quality customer portfolios, developing an extended range of services and leveraging its deep technological resources, human expertise and broad geographical coverage.

Millbrook brings extensive expertise in automotive electric driveline development, in particular through its battery and electric drivetrain test centres based in the UK and the USA. These services will ideally complement UTAC CERAM’s expertise in ADAS and Euro NCAP testing and in cybersecurity, connectivity and simulation, as deployed in its Teqmo autonomous vehicle test centre.

The group will operate several test centres world-wide — in France at the Linas-Montlhéry and Mortefontaine facilities, in the UK in Bedford and Leyland, in the USA in Detroit and California, in Finland at a vehicle test facility with indoor and outdoor winter testing tracks and in Morocco with a brand new test centre offering a track where vehicles are exposed to extreme heat (scheduled to open in 2021).

The new group will have the capability to offer a more extensive and comprehensive range of services including: the delivery of complex certification and testing programmes; the testing of vehicles and tyres in hot and cold climates; designing and delivering bespoke customer solutions and working with global brand partners to develop the connected EVs of the future.

Headed by Laurent Benoit, the current President of UTAC CERAM, the new group will leverage its considerable internal resources, international network and the support of its shareholders, especially its majority shareholder, Eurazeo, to pursue a strategy of innovation and to consolidate its markets in Europe and the world.

Mr Benoit said: “The arrival of Eurazeo as a shareholder, and FCDE’s support, opened the door for our group to access additional resources to improve the pace of growth around the world.

“The alliance with Millbrook represents a fantastic opportunity for our teams and a decisive step that allows us to continue supporting manufacturers and equipment suppliers along their industrial, societal and technological journey, as we have done with passion and pride since 1945.”

Connor McCormack, president of Millbrook, said: “The highly complementary skills, services and technologies of UTAC CERAM and Millbrook will enable us to extend our offering, which will benefit our customers the world over.

“In the year of our 50th anniversary, combining the two businesses positions us well to lead the market in technical testing, vehicle homologation and new technology. It is an exciting adventure in which everyone at Millbrook is proud to be involved.”