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Baker McKenzie advised Trimble (NASDAQ listed) on its acquisition of the privately held German company, Müller-Elektronik. Müller-Elektronik specializes in solutions for workplace control in precision agriculture. After signing of the purchase agreement on May 22, 2017, the transaction has today come to a closing. The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price.

Müller is a pioneer in precision farming, known for developing, producing and selling Electronic Control Units (ECUs) and embedded software that provides vehicle and implement control for tractors, combine harvesters, field sprayers, drill machines, seeders, spreaders and slurry tankers to improve the management of inputs such as seed, fertilizer and pesticides. Müller was a key contributor in the development of the ISOBUS communication protocol, which allows one terminal to control several implements and machines, regardless of manufacturer. ISOBUS standardizes the control settings, reduces downtime and minimizes installation and interface challenges, simplifying data exchange and machine control. The implement control solutions developed by Müller have now become widely adopted by leading agriculture OEMs and aftermarket channels.

The combination of the technologies from Trimble and Müller-Elektronik allows the development of new and innovative solutions. This benefits farmers around the world because it is often difficult for them to integrate hardware and software solutions from different manufacturers and to use them productively. With the acquisition of Müller-Elektronik, Trimble is able to create a system that greatly facilitates its productive use in precision agriculture.

Baker McKenzie advised Trimble on all legal aspects of the transaction. The transaction is structured as a share deal.

"Combining the strengths of the two companies means that our client can expand its competence further in precision agriculture. In this field, Trimble is already well represented relating to tractors and can now extend its presence to work equipment," comments Dr. Thomas Gilles, Corporate / M&A partner of Baker McKenzie.

Müller-Elektronik GmbH & Co. KG, founded in 1977 and based in Salzkotten, Germany, is a pioneer and leader in the development, production and sales of electronic solutions for agricultural machinery. For more than 40 years, the family-run company has been a leader in agricultural electronics with ground-breaking innovations, setting the pace with ISOBUS hardware and software solutions. With personal commitment, innovative spirit, flexibility and a focus on quality, Müller-Elektronik develops award-winning solutions for OEM, aftermarket, retail and end customers.

Trimble is transforming the way the world works by delivering products and services that connect the physical and digital worlds. Core technologies in positioning, modeling, connectivity and data analytics enable customers to improve productivity, quality, safety and sustainability. From purpose built products to enterprise lifecycle solutions, Trimble software, hardware and services are transforming a broad range of industries such as agriculture, construction, geospatial and transportation and logistics.

Baker McKenzie regularly advises clients on cross-border transactions and reorganizations. Most recently the team advised SPIE on its acquisition of LÜCK Group, Grünenthal on its acquisition of Adhesys Medical, Flowserve Corporation on the sale of Gestra-Gruppe, ZF Friedrichshafen AG on the sale of Cherry Group, the owners of Fragrance Resources on the sale of its fragrance business to International Flavors & Fragrances, Inc., GFKL on the acquisition of Tesch Group, CORESTATE on its acquisition of Hannover Leasing, Heraeus Group on the sale of the global high-performance target materials business to the US-based Materion Group, MAGNA International on its acquisition of the Böddecker & Co. GmbH & Co. KG, Dassault Systèmes on the acquisition of the CST group, Sulzer on the takeover of the GEKA group from 3i, Deutsche Beteiligungs AG on its participation in Reinhold & Mahla-Group, RWE and E.ON on the sale of their shares in the Luxembourg energy supplier Enovos, HITACHI Koki on the acquisition of Metabo AG and Barry-Wehmiller group on the acquisition of the operations of Winkler+Dünnebier GmbH.

Lead: 
Corporate/M&A: Dr. Thomas Gilles (partner, Frankfurt)

Team: 
Corporate/M&A: Matthew Gemello (partner, Palo Alto), Dr. Rebecka Ringnalda (associate, Frankfurt), James Parinello (associate Palo Alto), Dr. Björn Simon (counsel, Frankfurt), Dr. Markus Mörtel, Dr. Lenard Bock (both associates, Frankfurt)

Trade & Commerce: Dr. Johannes Teichmann (partner, Frankfurt), Ingmar Oltmanns (associate Frankfurt)

IT: Dr. Holger Lutz (Partner, Frankfurt)

IP: Dr. Michael Fammler (partner, Frankfurt), Philip Schmitz (associate, Munich)

Real Estate: Dr. Daniel Bork (associate, Düsseldorf)

Tax: Sonja Klein (partner, Frankfurt)

Antitrust: Christian Horstkotte (partner, Dusseldorf), Clara Dust (associate, Dusseldorf)

Inhouse Trimble: Jürgen Kesper, Legal Counsel

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