In one of the industry's larger recent cross-border transactions, Montreal-based professional services firm Genivar Inc. has agreed to spend $431 million to buy the higher-revenue U.K. engineering firm WSP Group plc in a cash deal that includes pension liabilities.
The deal, announced on June 7, would add 9,000 employees over a broader global footprint to Genivar's 5,500 mostly Canadian staffers, and officials said they did not expect "significant" staff cuts. The transaction is set to close by July 31, with a vote by WSP shareholders scheduled for July 13.
Genivar will retain its listing on the Toronto Stock Exchange listing, with CEO Pierre Shoiry retaining that role for the enlarged firm and WSP CEO Christopher Cole becoming chairman. Observers say Cole is to retire.
Genivar's services include planning, engineering, surveying, environmental sciences, and project and construction management. The firm ranks at no. 62 on ENR's list of the Top 150 Global Design Firms, with about $572.6 million in 2010 revenue. The firm listed about $7.1 million in non-Canada revenue, with work in the U.S., France, Colombia and Trinidad and Tobago.