Frederick, Md. – EarthData International Inc. founder Bryan J. Logan announced that he has signed an agreement in which Fugro NV, a global provider of geotechnical, survey, and geoscience services, will acquire 100 percent ownership of the EarthData group of companies, including Horizons, Inc. The agreement culminates years of planning to ensure the long-term growth and stability of the EarthData organization.
“Joining the global Fugro family is a natural next stage in EarthData’s evolution as a leading provider of airborne mapping, remote sensing, and geographic information services worldwide,” Logan stated. “With Fugro’s established and loyal international customer base and a goal to add geospatial services as a core offering, Fugro provides an ideal platform to provide services such as GeoSAR (radar mapping) services in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, South America, and Asia.” To that end, Logan, whose background includes 38 years in international mapping, will work with Fugro to help guide the development and execution of a global geospatial business strategy.
Success on the global market will mandate continued investment in new technologies, which has been a cornerstone of the EarthData organization. Widely credited with a number of industry firsts, EarthData is also the only company to offer an airborne dual-band radar mapping system. “As I considered various options to ensure the long-term success of EarthData, the commitment and resources to continue our ‘legacy of firsts’ was paramount to me,” Logan explained. “Sharing a vision for technology innovation, Fugro’s strong track record of successful risk management on major capital investments will ensure the next generation of advanced airborne sensors and processing systems.”
While the acquisition holds much promise for global market expansion and technology development, EarthData President Anne Hale Miglarese noted the company’s continued focus on the federal, state, and local US governments, as well as the US private sector. “Our commitment to supporting national security, environmental, and infrastructure needs remains steadfast, as does our desire to expand the value of geospatial information for commercial applications,” she said. Miglarese, who will continue her role as President of EarthData, also emphasized the commonalities that already exist between the two organizations noting first-class corporate values, a dedicated and talented workforce, and a long record of strong business performance.
The acquisition marks a major milestone for EarthData, which, owned by Logan for the past 22 years, traces its origins back to 1955. Under his leadership, EarthData has grown from a small conventional mapping company (formerly Photo Science, Inc.) to its present position as an industry leader recognized for customer service, its ability to successfully manage large and complex airborne mapping projects, and most notably, a commitment to geospatial technology innovation. In addition to developing the global geospatial market for Fugro, Logan will serve on EarthData’s new board of directors. About this new era in the history of the company, Logan stated, “I’m very optimistic and excited about the potential this transaction holds for the company’s customers and employees. I firmly believe Fugro is the foundation upon which we will continue to expand our services, develop new geospatial technologies, broaden our geographic reach, and better serve our existing and future customers.”
EarthData International was assisted in this transaction by Mr. Laurent Ohana and Ms. Singari Seshadri, principals with Parkview Ventures (www.parkviewventures.com), a New York-based merchant banking firm investing in and advising companies in the information technology sector. Over the past several years, Parkview Ventures worked closely with EarthData’s executive management team to enhance the company’s performance and successfully position it for the development and execution of this strategic transaction.
About EarthData International: EarthData provides a full range of mapping and GIS services to support customers’ needs in a wide variety of natural resource management, urban planning, economic development, national defense, and engineering activities. With its fleet of aircraft, the organization collects aerial photography, uses airborne laser (lidar) and imaging radar (GeoSAR) systems to produce 3D terrain models, and develops or deploys other remote sensing technologies to detect thermal and multispectral information about the earth’s surface. EarthData offices in the United States and China use this data to create and supply photogrammetric, lidar, radar, and digital orthophoto mapping and GIS applications and services, worldwide. (www.earthdata.com)
About Horizons: Horizons has provided high-quality photogrammetric mapping services since 1968. Based in Rapid City, South Dakota, with an office in Minnesota, Horizons serves public- and private-sector clients in government, mining, oil and gas, and engineering, among other vertical markets. Capabilities include a large aircraft fleet configured for aerial acquisition of imagery, lidar, and other sensors; data processing for the creation of orthophoto, topographic/planimetric maps; and GIS services. (www.horizonsinc.com)
About Fugro: Fugro collects, processes, and interprets data related to the earth’s surface and soil composition and provides advice based on the results. As an extension to these activities, Fugro provides services such as precise positioning, construction materials testing, reservoir engineering and data management. Fugro’s operations have been organized into three divisions: Geotechnical, Survey, and Geoscience. Fugro is listed on Euronext N.V. in Amsterdam and is included in the Amsterdam Midkap Index. Fugro has over 275 offices, approximately 10,000 staff and a permanent presence in over 50 countries (www.fugro.com)
Acquisition of EarthData International by Fugro Signals Commitment to Global Geospatial Leadership
April 11, 2007