Sweden's Atlas Copco agrees to buy Perceptron to expand into machine vision

FILE PHOTO: Atlas Copco headquarters are pictured outside Stockholm, Sweden September 4, 2020. Picture taken September 4, 2020. REUTERS/Johannes Hellstrom/File Photo

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Sweden's Atlas Copco ATCOa.ST said on Monday it had agreed to buy U.S group Perceptron PRCP.O, a supplier of automated metrology products, for 630 million Swedish crowns ($69 million) to expand in machine vision and factory automation.

The cash offer of $7.00 per share for Nasdaq-listed Perceptron PRCP.O represents a 71% premium to its closing price on Friday, and comes after Atlas bought German machine vision group Isra Vision ISRG.DE earlier this year in a $1.19 billion deal.

“Through Perceptron’s position in automated metrologyand robot guidance, together with the recent acquisition of Isra Vision, we are creating a strong offering in machine vision solutions,” Henrik Elmin, Head of Atlas Copco’s business area Industrial Technique, said in a statement.

The proposed cash deal, approved by Perceptron’s board, and supported by its biggest shareholder, is expected to close in the fourth quarter subject to majority approval by Perceptron’s shareholders and regulatory approvals.

Atlas Copco’s acquisition of Isra earlier this year has been seen by several analysts as a first building block to expand further in machine vision.

Atlas, Sweden’s most valuable listed company, said Perceptron would become part a newly created division Machine Vision Solutions within its Industrial Technique business area.

($1 = 9.0726 Swedish crowns)

(This story corrects to Friday from Monday in second para)

Reporting by Johannes Hellstrom, editing by Louise Heavens