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Schneider Electric To Buy Summit Energy for $268M

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Power gear company Schneider Electric has made one of the larger acquisitions in the industrial and commercial energy management sector. Thursday afternoon Schneider announced it has bought energy procurement and management company Summit Energy for $268 million.

Schneider Electric is fond of saying that 70 percent of the world’s electrons flow through its equipment. When it comes to the smart grid and next-generation energy technology the company has a multi-faceted approach, largely based on its strength in low and medium-voltage equipment and its industrial and commercial energy management systems. In particular, managing energy in buildings and connecting them back up to the smart grid looms large in its plans. (Schneider Electric’s VP of Smart Grid Strategy, Scott Henneberry, will be speaking at our Green:Net 2011 event on April 21, Super Saver tickets end this Saturday.)

Founded in 1991, Summit Energy provides energy management services, as well as energy procurement and consulting to industrial and commercial companies and says it manages more than $20 billion in annual energy spending for its more than 650 companies across thousands of facilities. Summit Energy is estimating it will generate sales of about $65 million this year.

Schneider reported revenues of €8.57 billion ($11.2 billion) in the first half of 2010, double those of the same period last year, and last year Schneider also closed on its joint acquisition of the transmission and distribution unit of French giant Areva. Other than that acquisition however, Schneider hasn’t been all that active in swallowing small startups.

Power gear competitors like Siemens, General Electric and ABB have been acquiring smart grid and next-gen energy technology, too. The smart grid and energy management is one of the industries in greentech, which actually has seen a significant amount of acquisitions (see this recent shopping list).

The deal is contingent on regulatory approval and closing conditions.

Image courtesy of thisisbossi.