UK Government expands investigation into FireAngel’s acquisition by intelligent safety electronics


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Overview of the Acquisition Deal

The UK government has extended its probe into the acquisition of FireAngel Safety Technology Group PLC by Singapore-based Intelligent Safety Electronics Pte. Ltd.

The deal, valued at £27.7 million ($35 million), has been under scrutiny since its announcement.

FireAngel, known for its fire alarm manufacturing and listed on the London Stock Exchange, confirmed this development in a recent regulatory statement.

The investigation, initiated under Section 23 of the National Security and Investment Act 2021, has led to an extension of the deal’s completion deadline to July 31.

Details of the Ongoing Investigation

The national security probe into this acquisition commenced on December 21.

The UK government will make a decision within 45 working days, with a provision for extension upon mutual agreement.

FireAngel and Intelligent Safety Electronics have responded to this development by adjusting the long stop date for the deal closure.

Legal advisories for the transaction are being provided by Hill Dickinson LLP for Intelligent Safety Electronics and a team from Pinsent Masons LLP, led by Gareth Jones and Sunjay Malhotra, for FireAngel.

Financial Aspects of the Acquisition

Intelligent Safety Electronics, which already holds a 17.46% stake in FireAngel, proposed to acquire the remaining shares at 7.4 pence each, utilizing its cash reserves.

This acquisition followed FireAngel’s strategic review initiated in June, exploring options for a speedy sale.

The review led to discussions with several parties, including Intelligent Safety Electronics.

FireAngel’s directors deemed the offer terms as “fair and reasonable” and recommended acceptance to the shareholders.

Additionally, FireAngel raised £6.1 million through a share sale in June, with plans to secure another £6.1 million to reduce its debts.

IFSJ Comment

The extension of the UK government’s investigation into the acquisition of FireAngel by Intelligent Safety Electronics reflects the meticulous approach taken in transactions involving national security implications.

The situation also demonstrates the intricate balance between financial strategy and regulatory compliance in international business deals.

FireAngel’s decision to undertake a strategic review and its subsequent actions underscore the complexities businesses face in today’s global market.

The outcome of this investigation will be closely monitored by stakeholders and could have broader implications for future cross-border acquisitions in similar sectors.

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