Motorola Buys the Airbus North American 9-1-1, P25 Business
Friday, July 28, 2017 | Comments
Motorola Solutions announced plans to buy the North American 9-1-1 and Project 25 (P25) business of Airbus. Airbus’ TETRA business based in Europe is not part of the acquisition.

Motorola executed a definitive agreement with Airbus SE under which the company will acquire Plant Holdings, which holds the Airbus DS Communications business. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, although Airbus DS Communications reported more than $100 million in revenues in 2016.

Airbus DS Communications is the leading provider in North America of command center software for emergency call handling. Its VESTA suite is a 9-1-1 call-handling solution that operates on an open software architecture with a transition path to next-generation 9-1-1 (NG 9-1-1). In addition to emergency call handling, it delivers text-to-9-1-1, mapping, data management and analytics.

Motorola has been acquiring companies in two main areas — services such as its $1.2 billion Airwave acquisition in 2015 and software. The Airbus DS acquisition will strengthen Motorola Solutions’ software portfolio, enabling expansion into new segments in U.S. emergency response solutions.

“We’re uniquely positioned to provide a suite of applications in the command center,” said Bruce Brda, executive vice president, products and solutions, Motorola Solutions. “… We now have the most complete portfolio in the industry.”

Last year, Motorola purchased CAD provider Spillman Technologies. Motorola also acquired Emergency CallWorks and software analytics provider PublicEngines in 2015. Brda said Motorola will continue to look for areas to grow in services and software.

Jeff Robertson was named president and CEO of Airbus DS Communications in May. In June, he said there was no imminent plan for an acquisition, although Airbus Defence and Space announced several years ago that is planned to divest its LMR divisions in Europe and North America.

An Airbus press release said the agreement is part of the portfolio reshaping within the Airbus Defence and Space Division announced in September 2014.

“For us, it’s inappropriate to talk about the timeline,” Brda said. “We’re thrilled to have this asset for the portfolio.”

The acquisition includes Airbus’ P25 infrastructure business, which is much smaller than the company’s 9-1-1 offerings, Brda said.

Most Airbus DS employees are located in Temecula, California, and Quebec. “We really like the team a lot,” Brda said. “They bring a level of expertise in 9-1-1 call-taking that we don’t have.”

The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals, and is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

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