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Around the Globe: companies

Navigant buys Arthur D. Little’s consulting units

Navigant Consulting has announced that it entered into a definitive agreement to acquire portions of Arthur D. Little’s management consulting business. The transaction is subject to final approval by the commonwealth of Massachusetts Bankruptcy Court in Worcester, Massachusetts, and the closing of the transaction was expected to take place late last month.

The consulting units acquired are ADL’s Advanced Energy Systems consulting practice, and its Technology and Innovation Management consulting practice. Combined, the groups had revenues last year of $10.5m. The business will become part of Navigant Consulting’s Energy and Water practice, which provides a broad range of management consulting services to companies in the energy, telecommunications and water industries.

Joel Singer, CEO, Navigant Consulting Energy and Water practice said: “The acquisition of these business units from Arthur D. Little brings us a highly talented team that has been very successful in providing technology-focused management consulting to the rapidly changing energy industry.”

Stuart teams with Ford to develop hydrogen back-up power systems

Stuart Energy Systems has signed a joint cooperation agreement with Ford Power Products, a subsidiary of Ford Motor Company. Ford has developed a hydrogen-fuelled power systems for the global back-up power generation and other power markets.

Stuart Energy will integrate its proprietary hydrogen back-up power system at its head office in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada this year. The installation will satisfy the first milestone in the letter of intent signed last year with Cheung Kong Infrastructure Holdings to supply hydrogen back-up power systems for the Hong Kong and Asia Pacific marketplace. Subsequent milestones include prototype systems operating in field trials by spring 2003. The first systems are expected to be commercially deployed by the end of 2003.

GE and Toshiba to develop new steam turbine buckets

GE Power Systems and the Toshiba Corporation have announced the development of new 1016 mm (40″) and 1219 mm (48″) steel last-stage buckets for steam turbine applications worldwide.

The new buckets will increase steam turbine power output capability, leading to improved plant efficiency and lower cost of producing electricity. The 48″ last-stage bucket is the largest steel full-speed (3000 r/min) last-stage in the world in terms of annulus area.

GE and Toshiba expect to offer the new buckets on their steam turbines for combined cycle and fossil power plant applications shipping in 2003. Vic Abate, general manager, steam turbine technology for GE said: “These state-of-the-art buckets are now being integrated into our steam turbine product portfolio to improve performance and output.”

PowerCold to buy Alturdyne

PowerCold Corporation announced that the company has signed a letter of intent to acquire Alturdyne, a San Diego-based manufacturer of diesel, natural gas, turbine and rotary generator sets.

Alturdyne sales during the past ten years have been in the $6.5-$11m range with seven profitable sales years including each of the last two years. The transaction, which would be non-dilutive for present shareholders, involves a combination of cash and stock. Under the proposed agreement, PowerCold would acquire all of Alturdyne’s assets and intellectual property. Alturdyne would then operate as an independent wholly-owned PowerCold subsidiary.

Repower in German IPO

Repower, the German wind power company, launched the country’s first initial public offering since last July by listing its shares on the Neuer Markt.

Schroder Salomon Smith Barney said the issue was five times over-subscribed. Repower, which was formed from the merger of five green power companies, raised g82m ($71m) by selling 37 per cent of its equity at g41 a share to investors in Germany, UK and Switzerland.

Superconductor restructures

American Superconductor has announced a series of restructuring and cost-cutting measures to create a more streamlined and flatter organization.

The company hopes that the move will shift its focus from that of a research-orientated company to one focussed on commercial products.

News digest

Atel rises: The Swiss energy trading and services group Atel has reported a rise of 58 per cent in year 2001 electricity sales to 53bn kWh, mainly due to high trading volumes in OTC standardized products. Northern Europe contributed 39 per cent of group turnover, southern Europe 30 per cent, Switzerland 18 per cent and central Europe 13 per cent.

Bechtel revenues: Bechtel booked $9.3bn in new work last year. Workoff revenue of $13.4bn represented one of the highest levels in Bechtel’s history. Though the company fell short of an ambitious 2001 financial plan, profitability held steady.

Calpine junk: Calpine pledged to find ways to obtain an investment-grade rating even as it had its debt pushed further into junk territory. S&P downgraded the company to BB from BB+ and its senior unsecured debt to B+ from BB+.

Cheveron expands: Cheveron-Texaco Technology Ventures announced the acquisition of certain assets of Dais-Analytic’s fuel processing and fuel cell group by one of its units, Analytic Energy Systems, a newly formed subsidiary of CheveronTexaco.

Deutz profits: Last year Deutz created changes for a turn-around to initiate model range improvements. The measures that were already implemented can be seen in the operating profits and earnings from normal business operations.

DynaMotive test: DynaMotive Energy Systems announced that it successfully completed testing and commissioning of its next generation pyrolysis system called Bio Therm III. The system uses low cost components and materials and is designed to continuously process low grade feedstock such as wood bark and forest residue with high wax content.

Enel profits: The Italian electricity giant Enel has posted group net profits of about g4.2bn for 2001, an increase over the previous year of 168.7 per cent on group sales up 7.6 per cent at g28.9bn. Operating profits rose by 5.4 per cent.

E.ON growth: E.ON delivered strong profitability despite a difficult economic environment. Group internal operating profit rose 45 per cent to g3.6bn a new all-time high. Sales, however, fell ten per cent to g80bn, mainly due to divestments made in the last year.

RWE expands: The RWE group and Schott Glas intend to continue expanding their leading position in the growth market for solar technology. To this end, both companies plan to contribute all their solar activities in the field of photovoltaic to a joint venture company this year.