Canadarm maker to be acquired by Canadian traders in $1B deal


A Toronto-based funding agency has signed a $1-billion deal to purchase the Canadian area expertise firm behind Radarsat Earth-observation satellites and the Canadarm robotic mechanisms on the Worldwide Area Station.


A consortium led by Northern Non-public Capital with monetary backing from former BlackBerry co-chief govt Jim Balsillie will purchase all Canadian and U.Okay. operations of the previous MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates.

The group says MDA’s company headquarters will return to Canada, the place it employs greater than 1,900 individuals.

MDA’s headquarters and largest operations had been within the Vancouver space till Maxar Applied sciences was created to permit MDA’s acquisition of Colorado-based DigitalGlobe, a producer of high-resolution Earth-imagery merchandise.


The deal to repatriate MDA’s Canadian operations might be financed by quite a few sources together with NPC, which is led by John Risley and Andrew Lapham, in addition to Balsillie, Scotiabank, Financial institution of Montreal, and Senvest Capital, an funding agency based mostly in Montreal.

Basillie is the previous co-CEO of Canadian expertise agency Analysis In Movement chargeable for the event of BlackBerry. 

The acquisition of MDA might be financed by a mixture of fairness and debt.


The group sees important development potential for MDA underneath its new possession.

Possession returns to Canada

“Over its 50-year history, MDA has grown from a B.C.-based start-up into a world-class space technology company and an anchor of Canada’s space program,” stated Risley stated in an announcement. “As a Canadian, I am so proud this iconic Canadian company will once again be owned and controlled in Canada.”

Northern Non-public Capital says the acquisition of MDA is predicted to shut in 2020 following regulatory approvals.

Maxar Applied sciences stated it’s promoting its Canadian unit in a bid to ease its debt. As of September, Maxar had a complete debt of $3.1 billion US. 

“This transaction combined with the recently completed sale of real estate in Palo Alto [Calif.] reduces Maxar’s overall debt by more than $1 billion,” stated chief monetary officer Biggs Porter. 

The corporate’s shares have been up 16.2 per cent in premarket buying and selling.

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