Kontron seeks to expand its position in embedded market with acquisition of Thales Computers

The acquisition of Thales Group in Toulon, France by Kontron AG in Eching, Germany, strengthens Kontron’s position in the embedded market and expands its presence in France, says Norbert Hauser, vice president of global marketing at Kontron AG.

May 1st, 2008
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By Courtney E. Howard

ECHING, Germany—The acquisition of Thales Group in Toulon, France by Kontron AG in Eching, Germany, strengthens Kontron’s position in the embedded market and expands its presence in France, says Norbert Hauser, vice president of global marketing at Kontron AG.

Kontron, a maker of embedded computers, finalized its acquisition of Thales Computers in March. Both companies have U.S. offices, and are heavily involved in real-time embedded computing for military and aerospace applications. The new company is called

Thales Computers specialized in long-term available embedded computer boards and systems based on VME and CompactPCI, as well as mezzanine cards and PowerPC technology. The acquisition of Thales Computers enables Kontron to extend its support to include Integrity, LynxOS, Red Hat Enterprise, ElinOS, QNX Neutrino, and other operating system software.

Kontron, as a result of the acquisition, also gains an increased regional presence, additional sales and market penetration, and in-depth know-how in the Power Architecture segment, which complements Kontron’s experience in Intel-based embedded computers.


The Thales Computers facility in Toulon, France, has become Kontron Modular Computers SA.
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“Thales Computers is strong in the COTS [commercial off-the-shelf] military, aerospace, and transportation markets with expertise in reliable and rugged systems in hard real-time and deterministic mission-critical applications,” Hauser explains. “The overlap between product portfolios is accordingly low. Customers therefore benefit from a wider choice of products, since together both companies offer everything demanded by the VME, CompactPCI, and mezzanine card markets.”

The acquisition extends Kontron’s product and service offerings. “As an example, our newly introduced VITA 38 solution providing IPMI for VME multiprocessor systems will enable customers to remotely operate VME systems based on IPMI middleware in the same way as CompactPCI, MicroTCA, and AdvancedTCA systems,” Hauser explains. “Kontron has ruggedized switches on CompactPCI that can be combined with VME high-end computers in a hybrid system using the same IPMI interface.

“Customers can combine PowerPC and Intel-based processor boards in one system depending on the computing and graphics needs. Customers who are using VME today and plan to migrate in the future to AdvancedTCA or MicroTCA, could do this smoothly without changing the existing established partnership with Kontron,” he says. “Also with the experience of ruggedization of boards and systems at Thales Computers we are able to offer these services for many of our standard and custom boards and systems.”

The purchase extends Kontron’s staff with more than 100 people, a majority of whom are engineers, and is expected to increase revenues. Also, as a French company, Thales Computers has knowledge of and a position with French authorities regarding government-funded projects and business, Hauser notes.

Thales Computers S.A. is operating within Kontron under the name Kontron Modular Computers S.A. as a legal entity in Toulon, France, with its own profit and loss responsibility, says Hauser. “They also were appointed to become our global center of excellence for VME products, PowerPC technology, and ruggedized applications [for military, aerospace, avionics, and railway market segments].”

For more information, visit Kontron America Inc. online at www.kontron.com.

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