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ASX-listed Calibre Group buys Downer’s Spiire NZ for $1.9m cash

Calibre Group [ASX: CGH], an ASX-listed mining and rail consultancy, has acquired New Zealand engineering and survey advisors Spiire Group from Downer EDI Group for $1.9 million.

Perth-based Calibre said the acquisition by its Brown Consulting unit would add to earnings immediately and extend its reach in civil and urban infrastructure.

Spiire, which has about 120 workers, is expected to generate $19 million in sales in 2014 and will contribute about $8 million revenue to Calibre. Its projects have ranged from the temporary stadium at Eden Park to the Levin District Court building, the new Christchurch stadium and the Rotorua police station.

"The acquisition provides exposure to improving economic conditions in New Zealand, in particular the significant construction opportunities associated with the Christchurch rebuilding activity, Auckland urban housing infrastructure upgrades and new investment," the company said in a statement.

Calibre said the purchase price includes a deferred component. It expects to invest in upgrading Spiire's IT systems and hardware, and provide working capital for the business, it said.

Shares of Calibre were trading unchanged at 45.5 Australian cents on the ASX this morning, having declined 71 percent in the past 12 months, with much of the drop coming after the company lowered its 2013 guidance in April last year. The stock is rated a 'buy' based on the consensus of three analysts polled by Reuters.

Downer's stock opened this morning on the ASX at A$4.747, down 2.5 percent, The company sold its Spiire Australia unit via a management buyout in June last year.

(BusinessDesk)

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