France’s Thales looks to sell piece of IT unit-source


French aerospace and defence company Thales is looking to sell part of its information technologies operations, a trade union source said confirming a report in business daily Les Echos .

Thales could sell its so-called Business Solutions unit, which manages IT systems and infrastructure for entities like libraries and hospitals and is seen as being too exposed to competition as well as too distant from the company’s core competencies.
“Management has said it has been approached about this business,” the source said.

France’s GFI Informatique has been indicated as a potential buyer, while a potential interest by British IT services company Logica , as suggested by Les Echos article, is more likely a rumour, the source said, Reuters reports.

Thales and Logica declined to comment, while GFI Informatique wasn’t immediately available for comment.

The Thales unit has a bit less than 550 employees and had annual sales of 81 million euros ($109 million) last year, Les Echos paper said.

Thales shares were trading 3.1 percent higher at 24.83 euros at 1442 GMT.