Report: Johnson Controls planning merger with Tyco

Multi-industrial firm continues to restructure

Johnson Controls Inc. headquarters
The Johnson Controls Inc. operational headquarters in Glendale.

Glendale-based Johnson Controls Inc. is “in advanced talks” to merge with Irish company Tyco International PLC for a reported $20 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Johnson Controls Inc. headquarters
The Johnson Controls Inc. headquarters in Glendale.

Tyco, which has its U.S. headquarters in Princeton, N.J., describes itself as “the world’s largest pure-play fire and security company,” with 57,000 employees at 900 locations worldwide. The Wall Street Journal article cites unnamed sources with a knowledge of the negotiations, who say the deal could be inked as soon as tomorrow.

A later report from Reuters said Johnson Controls is in advanced talks to acquire Tyco.

Johnson Controls, a global multi-industrial firm with about 130,000 employees, has undergone a dramatic transformation over the past several years, detailed in a recent BizTimes Milwaukee cover story. The company, which has predicted record 2016 profits, is in the process of spinning off its automotive division into a new company, which will be called Adient, that is leasing space in the 833 East building in downtown Milwaukee.

According to the WSJ report, Johnson Controls chief executive officer Alex Molinaroli would likely lead the company created by the merger with Tyco. There’s no word yet on where the company would be based. A Johnson Controls spokesman could not immediately be reached for comment.

One year ago Milwaukee Ald. Robert Bauman, who represents the downtown Milwaukee area, told BizTimes Milwaukee that Johnson Controls Inc. was working on plans for a 50-story, 1.2 million-square-foot building near the lakefront in downtown Milwaukee. The company has not commented on its plans, but it and the city are splitting the costs of a development feasibility study for a lakefront site. It remains unclear how a possible merger with Tyco would impact those plans.

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Molly Dill, former BizTimes Milwaukee managing editor.

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