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November 8, 2010

Harris swoops on Schlumberger satcom unit

Harris Corporation is paying $397.5 million for Schlumberger's satcom business and will combine it with its CapRock Communications unit.

Harris (NYSE:HRS) has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the Global Connectivity Services (GCS) business from Schlumberger Information Solutions, an operating unit of Schlumberger Limited (NYSE:SLB).

The acquisition will significantly extend Harris' capabilities as a global provider of managed satellite communications services for customers that include the offshore energy and maritime industries. Schlumberger GCS will be combined with recently acquired CapRock Communications to form Harris CapRock Communications.

Both Schlumberger GCS and Caprock are important players in the VSAT market - an increasingly popular communications option with many shipowners.

Schlumberger GCS provides global communication services for a wide range of customers primarily in the oil and gas industries, including Schlumberger. Its main operations are in the United Kingdom, Norway, Singapore and the U.S., and include 12 globally deployed teleports, a 24x7 Network Operations Center (NOC), worldwide terrestrial infrastructure, and VSAT manufacturing capabilities in the U.K. and Singapore.

The agreement to acquire Schlumberger GCS follows the Harris acquisition of CapRock Communications on July 30. CapRock has four self-owned and operated teleports and 11 regional support centers across North America, Central and South America, Europe, West Africa and Asia Pacific.

"Combining Schlumberger GCS with CapRock Communications will create an organization with unsurpassed global satellite network capabilities, broad service offerings, and a large experienced service team to provide customers with superior remote and in-the-field support," said Howard L. Lance, chairman, president and CEO of Harris. "Harris CapRock Communications will be able to use its capabilities and expertise to offer customers the most secure, reliable and efficient solutions in the industry."

"Schlumberger has successfully developed its Global Connectivity Services business over the past 10 years to reach an extensive global products and services offering. This acquisition by Harris will ensure continued growth and new technology deployment in a focused communications organization," said Tony Bowman, president of Schlumberger Information Solutions. "Schlumberger will continue to take advantage of these capabilities once the transaction is concluded through a long-term contract with Harris CapRock Communications."


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