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Article updated: 5/23/2013 2:30 PM

Dover to spin off Knowles communications businesses


Downers Grove-based equipment maker Dover Corp. said Thursday that its board approved a plan to spin off some of its communication technologies businesses into a new publicly traded company.

The new company will be known as Knowles Corp. and products will include acoustic components such as microphones, speakers, receivers and transducers. It also will produce communication infrastructure components, Dover said.

Jeffrey Niew, the current president and CEO of Dover's communication technologies unit, will serve as president and CEO of Knowles when the spinoff is complete, the company said.

Dover President and CEO Robert Livingston said the move to a stand-alone company will allow the businesses to pursue a more aggressive growth strategy.

"Given the evolution of their unique business model, these businesses can now pursue a more aggressive growth strategy together as a stand-alone company," Livingston said in a release. "Knowles will have the expertise, solid financial profile and operational flexibility to serve its global base of customers and their distinct product and technology needs."

Dover expects Knowles to post $1.3 billion in pro-forma annual revenue for 2013, with about two-thirds of that coming from acoustic products. Its prominent brands will include Knowles, Sound Solutions, Dielectric, Novacap, Syfer and Vectron.

"Knowles has a long track record of success. I am confident that with the continued momentum in this business, in particular the significant growth in the handset market, and the strength of the management team, the Knowles businesses will continue to build on their success as an independent company," Livingston said.

When the spinoff is complete, Dover expects its own pro-forma 2013 revenue to total between $7.4 billion and $7.6 billion. Its focus will be on energy, refrigeration, fluids, and printing and identification.

"Dover will continue to execute on its long-term strategy and commitment to industry leadership through innovation, leveraging its scale and focusing on its key end markets." Livingston said.

The spinoff is expected to be completed early next year. One-time costs are expected to total between $60 million and $70 million, Dover said.

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