L-3 to pay $210M for optics and sensors maker

Deal expands L-3's base in electro-optical/infrared market, a key strategic growth area for the company.

L-3 Communications Corp. has entered into an agreement to acquire the Kollmorgen Electro-Optical unit of Danaher Corp. for $210 million in cash.

KEO develops and manufactures specialized equipment for the U.S. military, prime contractors and allied nations.

Products include submarine photonics systems and periscopes, ship fire control systems, visual landing aids, ground electro-optical (EO) and sensor-cueing systems, according to the Dec. 13 L-3 announcement.

Upon completion of the transaction, which is expected in the first quarter of 2012, KEO will become part of L-3’s Integrated Sensor Systems organization.

KEO’s technologies provide situational awareness and will enhance current L-3 products, including ISR and targeting sensors, infrared imagers, laser range finders and optical assemblies, said Wes Motooka, president of L-3’s Integrated Sensor Systems Sector, in the announcement.

“KEO expands and broadens our base in the EO/IR market, a key strategic growth area for L-3, and strengthens our position as a mission-critical sensor systems provider,” Motooka added.

For the year ending Dec. 31, 2011, KEO is expected to generate sales in the range of $160 million to $170 million.

KEO, of Northampton, Mass., has facilities in Bologna, Italy, and employs approximately 550 people.

L-3 Communications, of McLean, Va., ranks No. 8 on Washington Technology’s 2011 Top 100 list of the largest federal government contractors.