Carrier Corp. announced the signing of an agreement to buy Nashville, Tenn.-based International Comfort Products Corp. for $11.75 per share in cash. Carrier's parent United Technologies Corp. will pay $490 million in cash for all of the outstanding shares of ICP and will assume about $230 million in debt.
ICP's products are marketed under the Heil, Tempstar, Arcoaire, Comfortmaker, Airquest, Keeprite, Lincoln, Dettson and Clare brand names. Its worldwide sales for 1998 were $733.5 million. Carrier had 1998 worldwide sales of $6.9 billion.
Carrier President John Lord said there would be few changes in ICP operations.
"We plan to operate ICP as a separate subsidiary with its own operating structure," Lord said. "We will maintain the sales infrastructure, the dealer and distributor network and maintain all brands as currently offered in the marketplace as ICP.
"The ICP distribution network is quite extensive with 300 independent distributors. Most are parts and supplies oriented, like the ARW (Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Wholesalers International Association) type."
ICP contractor/dealers are also different from and complementary to Carrier dealers, he said.
There will be no change in marketing, Lord said.
"We need to maintain what is already in place: the sales network, the distribution, the dealer network as known today, the brands and how they are supported and serviced," Lord said. "So there will be little or no changes at all in the way we go to market from the customer and distributor standpoint."