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    Schneider Electric accelerates its penetration of Ultra Terminal market in Europe with the acquisition of Merten in Germany

    Rueil Malmaison, France – March 28, 2006 – Schneider Electric has signed an agreement to acquire Merten GmbH & Co Kg, a German firm that offers low voltage intelligent solutions for the Residential and Buildings markets.

    Merten designs, manufactures and markets a comprehensive range of wiring devices for medium and high end segments (flush, mounted, weather proof switches …). It also offers control products and systems for lighting, closing, HVAC and security applications. In 2005, Merten generated revenue of nearly €100 million, of which 30% outside of Germany.

    With this acquisition, Schneider Electric will get significant access to low voltage installation and control systems market in Germany, which is the largest in Europe. Merten products will enable Schneider Electric to complete its ultra terminal offer with a comprehensive and complementary range of wiring devices and home control solutions. In 2005, Schneider Electric generated revenue of €1,2 billion in Ultra Terminal.

    Christian Wiest, Executive Vice-President of Schneider Electric’s Europe Operating Division, commented: “The acquisition of Merten will allow us to propose our customers additional solutions of energy savings in the Residential and Commercial Buildings markets. This project will help Schneider Electric to accelerate its development in the fast growing home control market thanks to Merten outstanding range of products.“

    Udo Neumann, CEO of Merten, added: “We will essentially benefit from Schneider Electric's global reach to strengthen the market position of Merten products and systems on an European basis and accelerate the launch of intelligent new products“.

    Subject to the authorization of the German and Austrian antitrust authorities, the transaction should be finalised in the second quarter of 2006. Schneider Electric expects that this acquisition will meet its Return on Capital Employed criteria within 3 years from completion.

    About Merten
    Founded in 1906, with 600 employees in 4 factories, 7 sales agencies in Germany and 9 sales subsidiaries in Europe and Asia, Merten offers solutions for intelligent buildings, from switches and security programs to building system technology. Merten has a world wide presence, and delivers high-utility solutions in private houses, public buildings, hotels and office buildings. www.merten.com

    Merten: Solutions for intelligent buildings

    About Schneider Electric
    Schneider Electric is the world’s power and control specialist. Through its world-class brands, Merlin Gerin, Square D and Telemecanique, Schneider Electric anticipates and satisfies its customers’ requirements in the residential, building, industry and energy and infrastructure markets. With 89,000 employees and operations in 130 countries, Schneider Electric generated sales of €11.7 billion in 2005 through 13,000 distributor outlets.

    Schneider Electric: Giving the best of the New Electric World To everyone, everywhere, at any time

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