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In what the participants describe as a complementary acquisition, Japan-based motion control and robotics service provider Yaskawa Electric Corp. has signed a definitive agreement to buy Vantaa, Finland-based The Switch, a supplier of megawatt-class permanent-magnet (PM) generator and full-power converter packages.

A purchase price was not disclosed, and the deal is expected to close within a few weeks.

According to Yaskawa, the company had been focusing on growing its market share in the renewable energy, marine and industrial applications sectors over the past few years. In autumn 2013, the two companies entered a strategic collaboration agreement whereby Yaskawa gained access to The Switch's capability in megawatt-class power generation and The Switch was able to develop its presence in Japan.

The product portfolios of both The Switch and Yaskawa are complementary, notes The Switch. For example, PM machines and low-voltage converters from The Switch range from 500 kW to more than 8 MW, whereas Yaskawa offers medium-voltage converters that extend the offering to large wind turbines and other applications. Yaskawa's global network will be used to promote The Switch’s products in wind power, marine and industrial applications.

According to The Switch, the brand will continue as its own entity for selected markets and applications. Given the challenges in the renewable energy markets, the acquisition by Yaskawa will give The Switch the backing needed to enable it to continue along its growth path.


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