GE & Honeywell: A Failed Merger|Business Strategy|Case Study|Case Studies

GE & Honeywell: A Failed Merger

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Case Details:

Case Code : BSTR085
Case Length : 14 Pages
Period : 1976 - 2003
Organization : GE, Honeywell International Inc, European Commission
Pub Date : 2004
Teaching Note : Available
Countries : USA
Industry : Aviation

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Honeywell Background

Honeywell was a diversified manufacturing and technology company operating in four major segments - Aerospace, Automation and Control Solutions, Specialty Materials, and Transportation and Power Systems. It was headquartered in New Jersey and at the end of 2002, employed approximately 100,000 people in 95 countries around the world. Honeywell started out by producing temperature control systems in the late-1880s.

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An inventor named Albert Butz (Butz) patented a concept for a temperature control system using a furnace regulator and alarm.

On April 23, 1886, he formed the Butz Thermo-Electric Regulator Co., in Minneapolis to develop his concept.

Later in the same year, he invented a product, which he called the 'damper-flapper', which used electro-mechanical devices to regulate the working of furnaces in homes to adjust the temperature automatically. Butz's company was later acquired by the Consolidated Temperature Control Co...

The Proposed Merger

Analysts said that GE's offer for Honeywell was prompted by the fact that Honeywell's businesses in aircraft engines, industrial systems, and plastics, were a good fit with GE's own businesses.

When Welch found out in mid-2000 that Honeywell's board was on the point of deciding on a merger with UTC, a rival of GE in the aerospace market, he lost no time in making a bid of his own. Honeywell's management also felt that a merger with GE would be more desirable than one with UTC and aborted talks with UTC immediately.

As the merger talks were in progress, GE began exercising control over all aspects of Honeywell's operations and Honeywell's management was expected to take approval from GE on all important matters such as hiring new employees and major operational decisions...

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