PE-backed CLS acquires TRE

Ardian-backed CLS has acquired Milan, Italy-based TRE, which measures ground movement of satellite radar sensors. No financial terms were disclosed.


Paris, November 10th 2015 – CLS, a leading French satellite services specialist and a subsidiary of CNES, Ardian and IFREMER, is pleased to announce the acquisition of TRE (Tele-Rilevamento Europa), an Italian company specializing in the measurement of ground movement by satellite radar sensors accurate to within millimetres. With this acquisition CLS reinforces its position as a key player in the field of terrestrial observation and surveillance.

Created in 2000 and based in Milan, TRE is a spin-off of the Politecnico di Milano which uses a unique algorithm to detect, measure and monitor ground movement phenomena. The acquisition complements CLS’s expertise in this field following its acquisition of the Spanish company ALTAMIRA INFORMATION in 2010. Following this acquisition, the enlarged CLS group will offer the market-leading solution for detecting and measuring ground movement.
CLS group, which has specialized in ocean observation and monitoring for almost 30 years, will now be able to offer high added-value map products for the petroleum, gas, mining infrastructure and environmental surveillance sectors. In addition, TRE and ALTAMIRA INFORMATION will also benefit from CLS’s marketing network and the corresponding synergism as they look to further grow internationally.

The acquisition of TRE, with a workforce of 40 and turnover in 2015 of €7 million, takes CLS’s global workforce to 600 and its projected turnover for 2015 to €107 million. TRE is CLS’s second acquisition this year, following that, in April, of the US company Horizon Marine Inc., a specialist in providing ocean forecasting services for offshore oil companies.

Christophe Vassal, CEO of CLS, explains: “With this new acquisition, CLS strengthens its investment in ground motion monitoring and becomes the global leader in the market. The company also reinforces its international presence in Italy and Canada – where TRE has a subsidiary – greatly increasing our capacity for innovation, and our ability to better serve the demands of international customers.”

Alessandro Ferretti, CEO of TRE, comments: “The synergy between TRE, ALTAMIRA INFORMATION and CLS will create by far the largest provider of surface deformation measurements using satellite radar imagery. With our combined understanding and expertise, and an international team of experts working jointly to develop even more sophisticated and powerful algorithms, there is huge potential for us to develop numerous new application of this technology.”

Roberto Lorenzo, CEO of ALTAMIRA INFORMATION, adds: “On behalf of the whole ALTAMIRA INFORMATION team, we welcome the arrival of this addition to the CLS group. This merger will enable us to provide more competitive, cutting-edge solutions, which will ultimately benefit our clients.”

TRE joins CLS’s international network of offices and subsidiaries: CLS France (Toulouse (headquarters), Brest), CLS America (Washington), CLS Peru (Lima), PT CLS INDONESIA (Jakarta), PROOCEANO (Rio de Janeiro), ALTAMIRA INFORMATION (Barcelona, Calgary), Horizon Marine Inc. (Richmond, Marion USA), NOVACOM Services (Toulouse, Amsterdam, Bidart), CLS Morocco (Rabat), CLS Vietnam (Hanoi), CLS China (Beijing), CLS La Réunion (St Pierre), Cubic-I (Tokyo), Cunlogan (Santiago de Chile), SIT (Melbourne), Es-PAS (Moscow) and KL-Trading (Seoul).

About CLS
CLS specializes in providing services for maritime domain awareness and environmental monitoring by means of its multi-mission receiving and processing facilities for radar satellite data and its 24-hour operational analysis centre, VIGISAT, located in Brest.

The company processes more than 10,000 radar images each year for maritime purposes and provides its services to several nations. These services include:
– detection and early warning of pollution and identification of pollutants,
– quasi-real-time detection of illegal activities, including illegal fishing,
– support in selecting sites for the installation of offshore, renewable, marine energy
– scientific research.

CLS expects to increase its turnover from €96 million in €2014 to €107 million in 2015.
The Group has been growing strongly in recent years and has set itself the goal of achieving a turnover of €107M in 2015 by breaking into new markets. The Toulouse-based Group, which employs 600 people, operates in five strategic business sectors: the sustainable management of marine resources; environmental monitoring; maritime security; support for onshore and offshore oil operations; and the geolocation of land vehicles. It provides satellite-based services for environmental data collection and positioning (data from 45,000 transmitters is processed each month, from drifting buoys, tagged animals, fishing fleets and merchant vessels, etc.), the observation of oceans and inland water (several satellites supply daily information to CLS on the Earth’s seas and oceans), the monitoring of activities on land and at sea, and the geolocation of terrestrial mobile units (45,000 vehicles were followed by the CLS Group subsidiary Novacom Services in 2015).

The Centre National D’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) is the government agency responsible for shaping and implementing France’s space policy in Europe. Its task is to invent the space systems of the future, bring space technologies to maturity and guarantee France’s independent access to space.

CNES is a pivotal player in Europe’s space program and a major source of initiatives and proposals that aim to maintain France and Europe’s competitive edge. The participation of France in the European Space Agency (ESA) is also provided by CNES. It conceives and executes space programs with its partners in the scientific community and industry, and is closely involved in many international cooperation programs – the key to any far-reaching space policy.

Ardian, founded in 1996 and led by Dominique Senequier, is an independent private investment company with assets of US$50bn managed or advised in Europe, North America and Asia. The company, which is majority-owned by its employees, keeps entrepreneurship at its heart and delivers investment performance to its global investors while fuelling growth in economies across the world. Ardian’s investment process embodies three values: excellence, loyalty and entrepreneurship.

Ardian maintains a truly global network, with more than 380 employees working through eleven offices in Paris, London, Frankfurt, Milan, Madrid, Zurich, New York, San Francisco, Beijing, Singapore, Jersey and Luxembourg. The company offers its 433 investors a diversified choice of funds covering the full range of asset classes through Ardian Funds of Funds (comprising primary, early secondary and secondary activities), Ardian Private Debt, Ardian Direct Funds (comprising Ardian Mid Cap Buyout, Ardian Expansion, Ardian Growth and Ardian Co-Investment), Ardian Infrastructure, Ardian Real Estate and customized mandate solutions with Ardian Mandates.

Ifremer, through its research work and expert advice, contributes to knowledge of the oceans and their resources, to monitoring marine and coastal environments, and to sustainable development of marine activities. To these ends, Ifremer conceives and operates tools for observation, experimentation and monitoring, and manages oceanographic databases. It also operates a great portion of the ocean research fleet, including all underwater systems and large-scale mobile facilities and equipment (seismic, penetrometer, etc.). Created in 1984, Ifremer is a public institute of an industrial and commercial nature (EPIC). It is supervised jointly by the Ministry of Higher Education and Research and France’s Ministry of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy.