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United Technologies Buying Nortek?

Nortek, the parent of multiple custom-installation brands, is in talks to be acquired by United Technologies Corp., a report from the Wall Street Journal said.

United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., makes Pratt & Whitney jet engines, Otis elevators, Carrier air-conditioning equipment, Chubb security systems and Kidde fire alarms.

Nortek, based in Providence, R.I., operates businesses in commercial and industrial ventilation, residential and commercial HVAC, and security and control systems. In the residential custom-install markets, its brands are Aton, BlueBolt, Elan, Furman, Niles, Panamax, Proficient, SpeakerCraft, Sunfire and Xantech.  Nortek also owns Nortek Security & Control, a maker of security systems.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the potential acquisition would mark United’s latest effort to “remake itself amid lackluster results.”

United generated $65.1 billion in 2014 revenues and a net income of $6.6 billion, though its second-quarter sales 2015 were down 5 percent and net income was down 7.7 percent.

Nortek posted a 2014 net loss of $45.6 million on sales of $2.55 billion. Its custom brands accounted for less than 10 percent of volume. The company has been reorganizing its units since 2012 “with the goal of transforming from a holding company for its various brands into an actively managed manufacturer,” the Journal reported.