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Valmont Acquires Majority Stake in Italian Solar Tracker Provider
Nebraska Ag Connection - 08/07/2018

Valmont Industries, Inc. Omaha, Neb., a leading global provider of engineered products and services for infrastructure development and irrigation equipment and services for agriculture, today announced that it has acquired a majority ownership stake in Convert Italia SpA, a designer and provider of engineered solar tracker solutions. The transaction was funded with cash on hand. The company expects the acquisition to be slightly EPS accretive in fiscal 2018, and expects EPS accretion of approximately $0.10 in fiscal 2019.

Headquartered in Rome, Italy, with offices in Brazil and Argentina, Convert Italia has successfully completed solar tracker projects in Europe, Latin America, and Africa. Their single access tracker product, the TRJ, was designed, developed, and patented by the Convert Italia team. The TRJ optimally positions solar panels to the sun's rays by continuously following solar exposure. The result is increased energy production compared to traditional, fixed solar structures, and lower installation costs than other single access trackers.

"The partnership with Convert Italia is an exciting advancement of our strategy to grow market adjacencies in our Utility Support Structures business," said Stephen G. Kaniewski, president and CEO of Valmont. "Combining their single access tracker technology with our global manufacturing capabilities and utility customer base, allows us to provide an integrated solar tracker solution to utility-scale customers around the world."

With more than 10 years' experience in the solar industry, and 35 years in the energy sector, the Convert Italia executive team will continue to lead the business. "The opportunity to partner with Valmont as an industry leader in the utility market has energized the Convert Italia team", said Giuseppe Moro, chief executive officer of Convert Italia. "Valmont's global footprint and strong relationships with utility customers supports our leadership position in providing renewable energy solutions."

Kaniewski continued, "This acquisition uniquely positions Valmont to supply every type of electric grid structure within the utility market. As utilities increase development of large-scale solar power and microgrid applications, single access tracker solutions will be an essential tool for achieving higher energy production. Our manufacturing footprint and supply chain capabilities give us flexibility across global markets to produce structural components for tracker technology. We are motivated by the robust growth opportunities in this industry, and welcome the strong leadership and knowledge of the Convert Italia team."

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