Itron, Inc. recently announced that it has signed an agreement to acquire privately held SmartSynch, Inc., a developer of cellular-based smart grid  services for the utility industry, in a transaction valued at $100 million.
According to Itron , the acquisition will bring greater choice to utility customers across the spectrum of smart metering deployments and strengthen its integrated cellular communications offering. The parties expect the transaction to close in the second quarter of 2012.
SmartSynch , headquartered in Jackson, Mississippi, has more than 130 customers, including nine of the top ten utilities in North America. SmartSynch and Itron have partnered for more than a decade, delivering integrated services to some of Itron ’s largest smart grid customers, says the company.
Itron and SmartSynch’s technologies can be used to provide a service in areas where RF mesh networks are not available, or are cost prohibitive. In addition, SmartSynch’s technology will meet the needs of full cellular smart grid  network deployments, such as the 1.9 million electric residential and commercial & industrial meter end-point deployment at Consumers Energy.
“Utility customers are demanding more options and this is a combination that just makes sense,” said Stephen Johnston, SmartSynch chief executive officer. “Our companies share existing customer relationships, integrated technologies and a common culture that will enable us to pursue new opportunities.”
Excluding amortization of acquired intangible assets, purchase accounting adjustments and acquisition related charges, the company anticipates that the acquisition will add approximately $50 million in revenues and be dilutive to non-GAAP net earnings per share by less than $0.10 for fiscal year 2012. The acquisition is anticipated to be accretive to revenue and non-GAAP earnings per share in fiscal year 2013.
Itron was advised on the transaction by Centerview Partners LLC. SmartSynch was advised by Stephens Inc.