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In the spirit of one-upmanship Emerson Electric Co. beat out ABB in an effort to acquire Chloride Group Plc. Emerson will pay $1.5 billion for the UK’s largest maker of uninterruptible power supply (UPS) equipment.
This hasn’t been an easy road for Emerson as it had made offers before and Chloride turned them down. ABB came in with a sweeter package and Chloride jumped only to have St. Louis, MO-based Emerson come back with a better bid.
Chloride, Britain’s largest maker of backup power equipment, said in a regulatory filing Emerson’s proposal is “superior” to ABB’s offer.
After reviewing the latest development, ABB decided to back off.
“While we still see considerable value in the combination of ABB and Chloride and have a high regard for the Chloride management team, we must take a disciplined approach when assessing potential acquisitions,” said Joe Hogan, ABB’s chief executive.
If Emerson finally closes the deal, the company would become the largest supplier of critical power systems in Europe.
Last April, Emerson Chairman David Farr said acquiring Chloride would help the company compete with Schneider Electric SA and Eaton Corp. in the market for uninterruptible power- supply gear.
In ABB’s previous offer, the company said it would pay $1.24 billion or Chloride. Chloride’s UPS’ usually go in applications where power quality and security are vital.

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