Maxar to sell Robotics division
January 2, 2020
By Chris Forrester
Maxar Technologies is to sell its famous MDA (Macdonald, Dettwiler & Association) space robotics business, including its Canadarm-branded devices, to a consortium led by Northern Private Capital for C$1 billion (€682.3m). The sale is not unexpected.
“The transaction includes all of MDA’s Canadian businesses, encompassing ground stations, radar satellite products, robotics, defense, and satellite components, representing approximately 1,900 employees. These businesses are expected to generate approximately US$370 million and US$85 million in revenue and Adjusted EBITDA, respectively in 2019. This revenue is inclusive of approximately US$78 million of intercompany sales to other Maxar entities,” said a company statement on December 30th.
“This transaction — when combined with the recently completed sale of real estate in Palo Alto — reduces Maxar’s overall debt by more than $1 billion and significantly reduces Maxar’s leverage ratio,” said Biggs Porter, Maxar CFO. “Also, the loss of future cash flow from MDA will be significantly offset by interest savings from the reduction of debt. We expect the net effect of all these factors to only reduce our prior guidance for Adjusted EBITDA and free cash flow generation in the 2022 to 2023 time period by approximately $50 million,” continued the statement.
“The sale of MDA furthers execution on the company’s near-term priority of reducing debt and leverage,” said Dan Jablonsky, Maxar CEO. “It also provides increased flexibility, range, and focus to take advantage of substantial growth opportunities across Earth Intelligence and Space Infrastructure categories. After the transaction is complete, Maxar will retain leading capabilities in geospatial data and analytics, satellites, space robotics, and space infrastructure, and we will continue to have strong alignment with our defense and intelligence customers, the evolving requirements of civil governments, and the pursuit of innovation seen in the commercial marketplace. We thank the talented employees of MDA, who have built a world-class business with unique capabilities, and we look forward to working with them as a commercial partner and component supplier to Maxar going forward,” the company added.