Trimble To Acquire OmniSTAR Land Applications Business

Trimble announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire certain assets related to the OmniSTAR Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) signal corrections business from Fugro N.V. Trimble and Fugro also entered into a multi-year service agreement which includes Fugro’s ongoing operation of its correction network and satellite service broadcast systems that power the OmniSTAR service.

Closing of the transaction, anticipated in the first quarter, is subject to certain closing conditions. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The acquisition is expected to significantly expand Trimble’s worldwide ability to provide correction services for land-based agriculture, construction, mapping and Geographic Information System (GIS) and survey applications. OmniSTAR provides space-based GNSS correction services that can improve the accuracy of a GNSS receiver for precise positioning applications. Currently, there are four levels of OmniSTAR service: offering sub-meter positioning, delivering better than 20 centimeter accuracy and delivering greater than 10 centimeter accuracy. In addition, the new OmniSTAR service combines GPS plus GLONASS-based corrections to provide decimeter level positioning.

With the addition of the OmniSTAR services and our strong relationship with Fugro, we will offer a full range of high-precision positioning capabilities which now includes satellite-delivered corrections, said Patricia Boothe, general manager of Trimble’s newly-formed Positioning Services Division. Today, our agriculture customers use OmniSTAR services to perform planting, harvesting, variable rate application and many other operations. Our expanded portfolio will provide not only farmers, but also surveying, construction and GIS professionals with more options to satisfy their particular accuracy, delivery and financial needs.

Trimble and OmniSTAR have enjoyed a long standing relationship,said John Waits, president of OmniSTAR. The transfer of land-based GNSS signal corrections assets marks the next phase of our efforts to bring a broader range of positioning services to our combined customer base, on land and offshore. The OmniSTAR and Fugro teams remain committed to providing industry leading corrections services for customers who own a variety of GNSS receivers.

A spokesman for Trimble said that OmniStar functionality for ag will continue, and OmniStar business partners who sell subscriptions can continue to do so per existing distributor agreements.

Tim Norris, president of consulting firm AgInfoTech, Mt. Vernon, OH, says that as a Trimble Dealer he feels that the acquisition of OmniSTAR will help them provide a seamless GPS positioning service. With our RTK networks, Trimble dealers are in control of the RTK correction,  says Norris. Anytime we can get a third party out of the equation, the service becomes more seamless and problems are more easily diagnosed. I think it will be a win for Trimble, their dealers and their customers.

The OmniSTAR business will be reported as part of Trimble’s Engineering and Construction segment.

For more information, visit: www.trimble.com.

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