MONTREAL — Quebec-based professional service firm WSP Global Inc. is expanding its U.S. presence by agreeing to purchase Berger Group Holdings Inc. for US$400 million ($520.8 million).
The U.S. firm operating under the name Louis Berger is active mainly in the transportation, infrastructure, environment and water sectors, along with master planning.
It has about 5,000 employees, mainly in the U.S., along with Europe, the Middle East, Africa, India and Latin America.
Founded in 1953, Louis Berger’s American operations account for about 70 per cent of US$480 million in annual net revenues.
Its portfolio includes service contracts for the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool, the Statue of Liberty, the George Washington Bridge, the World Trade Center and most recently emergency management services for temporary power in Puerto Rico since Hurricane Maria.
The company has been selected as part of a joint venture to provide project management services to build Qatari capital Doha’s first metro and supervise construction of three stadiums for the FIFA 2022 World Cup.
The acquisition is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter and will be funded through a loan from the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce.
WSP expects to realize about US$15 million in cost savings within one year and incur US$50 million in integration and restructuring costs.