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Finatem Acquires Majority Stake in IT Company dataWerks

 

- Investment through the fund Finatem IV

- Entry into the promising field of Big Data software supported by experienced industry experts

- Financing of continued expansion through a capital increase

Finatem, an independent investment company with a focus on small and medium-sized German companies, has acquired a majority stake in the dataWerks Group based in Seligenstadt, Germany, through the fund Finatem IV it manages and will also be making additional funds available to finance its planned growth.

dataWerks develops and markets business intelligence solutions in the area of Big Data for processing and analyzing huge volumes of digital data. The technology it developed itself and filed patents for enables linking of an unlimited number of data sources and provides access in real-time at significantly lower investment and operating costs than established solutions. The dataWerks technology can thus provide advanced data analysis methods for a sustained increase in a company's success, not only in the IT environments of large corporations, but also for SMEs. 

“The company has great potential in a rapidly growing market. We are convinced that the founding team of dataWerks that will remain significantly involved as its active management will realize this potential,” commented Finatem Investment Manager Alexander Stein in reference to the current situation.

“The investment in dataWerks is a very interesting entry into the IT sector for Finatem and underscores our broad investment approach,” adds Daniel Kartje, Partner at Finatem. “We will actively support the company both nationally and internationally on its continued growth course with our expertise. Here, we can rely on our extensive network in German industry on the one hand. On the other hand, we succeeded in having renowned industry experts, who already accompanied us during the due diligence process, join the Advisory Board. We also see further potential through the international private equity alliance “Alliance for Global Growth,” which Finatem co-founded. 

Nazca Acquires a Majority Stake in Caiba

Nazca Capital has reached an agreement (through Nazca Fund III) with the Baths Family (owner and founder of the company) for the acquisition of a stake of around 75% of Caiba, a pioneer in Spain in the sector plastic packaging specializing in the design and manufacture of PET preforms and containers, mainly for the sectors of food, beverages and personal hygiene and home. 

In this new stage, Caiba aims to consolidate its strong domestic growth in recent years betting on the continued increase in its customer base, development and innovation of new materials, products and formats, and entry into new market segments, both nationally and internationally (about 15% of its sales now come from exports). To this end, it is planned investments to expand its current capacity and strengthen its production facilities to achieve the project objectives growth. the ability to grow through buying companies that complement its product range is not ruled out.

Caiba, notable for its wide range of products, diversification of its customer base, innovation and new product development (pioneer in creating new formats and developing packaging colors with one of the largest ranges in the market) and quality of service. Currently, Caiba designs, manufactures and markets both preforms and containers for leading consumer sectors with a portfolio of more than 800 customers including major companies in the food, beverage and personal hygiene sector and household.

The Valencia-based company has around 150 employees and has 45,000m2 of production facilities spread over plants Valencia (inaugurated in 2012 and one of the most modern plants in Europe) and Jaén (world leader in the production region olive oil, mostly packaged in PET), from which produces and distributes both the domestic market and export. Additionally, Caiba is the leader in developing integrations (where the blowing process is carried out on site by the customer), with a total of 15 facilities company. Caiba is also one of the companies with the largest installed capacity in Spain (59 injection molding machines, blow molding or injection blow molding) and in 2015 produced more than 1,000 million units.

Oquendo, Uría and PWC have advised Nazca in acquiring Caiba and BDO and Grant Thornton to the Baths family.

Axcel creates global market leader in high-tech equipment for the global slaughter industry

Axcel is to invest in SFK LEBLANC, Attec, ITEC and Carometec, merging the four companies into an effective leading global player in the rapidly growing market for high- tech slaughter equipment. The merged company will have total revenue of around DKK 1.1 billion and 740 employees.

SFK LEBLANC, the largest of the four companies, was founded in 1931 as SFK, a subsidiary of Danish Crown with the purpose of supplying meat processing equipment. SFK was sold to Maj Invest in 2006 and has since been transformed from essentially an internal supplier of Danish Crown into a global player in high-tech slaughter equipment. This was made possible by sizeable investments in product development and the acquisition of North American market leader G.E. Leblanc and Dutch market-leading cattle specialist NAWI.

The other three companies ‒ Attec, ITEC and Carometec ‒ are all privately owned and have also, through focus on product development and global customers, carved out interesting positions in the market for high-tech slaughter equipment, with some of the products and solutions being completely unique.

The company acquisitions were negotiated separately and are not interdependent.

"Basically, the companies are operating in a growing market driven by increasing global meat consumption, especially in a number of the world's fastest growing economies," says Axcel Director Christoffer Müller. "The merger will create a global market leader with a solid basis for growth as a consequence of a stronger product programme and a stronger geographical presence. Furthermore, the merged group will have the resources to invest more offensively in product development and new sales offices in a number of markets, which should further accelerate the growth. That makes this a very exciting investment that we're looking forward to working on."

The sellers of SFK LEBLANC ‒ Maj Invest and Nimbus ‒ are delighted with how the company has developed:

"When we bought SFK in 2006, we knew that a major transformation process lay ahead. It's been a big challenge remaining competitive for other customers, but thanks to a skilful management, which has implemented our strategy to the letter, we've succeeded in turning the company into a market-leading player in the industry," says Maj Invest partner Per Høholt. William Blair International has acted as the exclusive financial adviser to Maj Invest and SFK LEBLANC.

SFK LEBLANC is similarly delighted that the merger has now been finalised:

"Attec, ITEC and Carometec are very strong niche companies in our industry with whom we've enjoyed a good relationship for a long time. This is a natural merger that will allow us to offer customers an even better product programme and solutions, so we're really excited about the partnership," says Ib Sand Nykjær, SFK LEBLANC's CEO.

Attec and ITEC also have big expectations of the new set-up:

"We believe this merger will strengthen SFK LEBLANC as well as Attec and ITEC, and the fact that we've now succeeded in creating a major player in the slaughter industry with strong Danish roots is obviously very satisfying," says Andreas Iskov Jensen, managing director and owner of Attec.

Carometec is also looking forward to the merger:

"This merger with SFK LEBLANC, Attec and ITEC will create a solid platform for integrating Carometec's unique technologies directly into future automation solutions throughout the slaughter process," says CEO Henrik Andersen.

"The investment in SFK LEBLANC, Attec, ITEC and Carometec will be the eleventh carried out in Axcel IV, and we've now carried out a total of 45 investments across our funds as well as 36 exits," says Christian Frigast, Managing Partner at Axcel. "With the latest successful exits and with our new organisation in place, we're ready to prepare the work of raising Axcel V during the autumn of 2016."

"We were attracted by the possibility of being able to help create a leading global player in the market for high-tech slaughter equipment," says Torben Vangstrup, managing partner at ATP Private Equity Partners. "The market is expected to experience growth as a result of consolidations and automation in the slaughter industry as well as a general increase in food consumption worldwide. The conditions are therefore in place for the investment to generate good returns for ATP's members in the long term."

The transaction is expected to be completed in August 2016.

Axcel Sells EXHAUSTO to French Group Aldes

French family-owned ventilation group Aldes is buying EXHAUSTO from its owners Axcel and VKR Holding.

EXHAUSTO is a leading producer of mechanical ventilation solutions for residential buildings, offices, schools and institutions, etc. and is the market leader in Denmark and Norway with growing positions in Germany and Sweden. In 2015, EXHAUSTO posted revenue of approx. DKK 470 million and had around 320 employees, of whom 200 were located in Langeskov on Funen.

Axcel became a co-owner of EXHAUSTO at the end of 2012 through the acquisition of a 60% shareholding from VKR Holding, which itself retained the remaining shares. All the shares will now be sold to Aldes.

“I’m delighted that Aldes is buying EXHAUSTO,” says Casper Lykke Pedersen, the partner at Axcel responsible for the investment. “This is a perfect match that will strengthen EXHAUSTO’s development prospects as part of a big international group that already has a presence in 60 countries.”

Aldes is also extremely satisfied that an agreement has been finalised: “The acquisition of EXHAUSTO is a major step in our international development that, in particular, will open up doors to the Scandinavian and German markets,” says Stanislas Lacroix, CEO and chairman of the Aldes Group. “EXHAUSTO’s know-how fits perfectly with the requirements of the Aldes Group and will enable us to increase our growth in Europe and the rest of the world.”

Dunedin continues to grow its financial services portfolio with investment in Kingsbridge

Dunedin has backed the buyout of Kingsbridge Risk Solutions (“Kingsbridge”), an insurance broker for contractors and corporates. 

This is Dunedin’s second investment in the financial services sector this year, following the buyout of Alpha Financial Markets Consulting in February 2016.

Founded by the current CEO Steve Wynne in 2001, Kingsbridge is the UK’s market-leading provider of insurance services that are tailored to meet the needs of contractors, freelancers and independent professionals, as well as the compliance requirements of partners including recruiters and accountants. Working alongside its strong partner network, Kingsbridge covers the broadest range of industry sectors in its market, including aerospace, banking and finance, rail, automotive, nuclear, oil and gas and information technology. 

The company, which employs 55 people, is headquartered in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, and has offices in Liverpool and Guernsey. Over the last two years, Kingsbridge has more than doubled EBITDA and almost doubled revenues to c. £7 million.

Following this investment by Dunedin, Kingsbridge will continue to grow through expansion into new sectors and through the introduction of new insurance products that are tailored for the contractor market. The business will also focus on international expansion, enabling it to offer insurance to contractors that operate overseas.

Giles Derry, Partner at Dunedin, who will join the Kingsbridge board at completion, commented: “Kingsbridge represents an opportunity for us to invest in a UK “hidden champion” - a business that is still at the early stages of its development but has already proven its business plan and established a strong position in a fast growing market. We very much look forward to working with the Kingsbridge team to help them capitalise on the significant growth prospects that lie ahead.”

Oliver Bevan, Partner at Dunedin, who co-led the Kingsbridge and Alpha deals and who will also join the Kingsbridge board, added: “Dunedin has developed significant expertise and experience in Financial Services and we are very pleased to have backed two exciting businesses from the sector in the last two months. We were able to draw on our sector expertise to identify this investment opportunity, and as a result the deal was conducted off-market.”

Steve Wynne, founder and CEO of Kingsbridge, commented:

‘We have achieved significant growth in the last two to three years and the time is now right to take the business into the next phase of its development. Having considered the various options available to us, we have chosen Dunedin as our investment partner as we feel that they will enable us to maintain our pace of growth, retain our independence and nurture our entrepreneurial spirit.

“We have a clear vision for Kingsbridge and are confident that, with Dunedin’s support, we can build on our market leading position.”

Leading the deal for Dunedin were Giles Derry (Partner), Oliver Bevan (Partner) and Jessica Hardy (Associate).

 

CLC, A Portfolio Company of Silver Oak Services Partners, Completes Add-on Acquisition

Construction Labor Contractors, LLC (“CLC”), a portfolio company of Silver Oak Services Partners LLC, announced that is has acquired Skilled Labor Solutions, Inc. (“SLS”).  SLS is a premier provider of electricians and other skilled tradesmen to the commercial construction market in the Baltimore, MD and Washington D.C. markets.

Brad Chesin, Chief Executive Officer of CLC said, “We are very excited to add SLS into our organization. The business has a great reputation in the industry, has demonstrated great growth and brings additional organizational talent to CLC. In addition, this partnership will significantly strengthen our presence on the East Coast and we look forward to working with the SLS team to continue to grow the business.”

Greg Barr, Managing Partner of Silver Oak Services Partners, added “CLC’s long-term strategy continues to focus on augmenting our strong organic growth with acquisitions of leading players in their local geographies. Given SLS’s market share leadership in the Baltimore market and strong reputation, we’re pleased to add them to our existing platform.”

Overview of CLC

CLC is a leading provider of temporary staffing of skilled tradesmen for the commercial construction market. The Company operates locations in the Mid-Atlantic, Midwest and Southwest regions and has the ability to serve customers in all 50 states. Silver Oak and management continue to focus on building the CLC platform across the United States and continue to pursue add-on acquisitions of complementary businesses in attractive geographies.

Axcel Sells Netel to IK Investment Partners

Since Axcel joined the group of owners, Netel has more than tripled its revenue, from SEK 0.5bn to SEK 1.5bn, and today it is a leading service provider within the rollout and maintenance of telecom, broadband and electrical networks in the Nordic and Baltic regions. With IK Investment Partners as its new principal shareholder, Netel will continue to expand.

In early 2013, a decision was made to expand the group of owners, and the private equity firm Axcel was offered a majority stake in the company. Since then, Netel has expanded its original business while also successfully widening its range of services and entering new geographical markets. During this period, acquisitions have been made in Sweden,  Norway, Finland and the Baltic states which have complemented the company and strengthened its opportunities to offer customers a full range of services in the Nordic markets.

Axcel has been a strong companion on our growth path. Over the last few years, we have further strengthened our service offerings, expanded in both Sweden and Norway and entered Finland and the Baltic states,” says Erik Salling, President of Netel. "In addition, we have widened our range of services to include e.g. electrical networks. We are now well-equipped to meet future challenges, and we look forward to further developing the company together with our new principal shareholder, IK Investment Partners."

Axcel is very satisfied with developments in Netel: “Revenue has more than tripled during Axcel’s period of ownership. The company’s management and dedicated employees have done a fantastic job in this growth phase,” says Stefan Hollander, member of the Board of Directors of Netel, representing Axcel.

Netel is a leading provider within the rollout of and services relating to physical telecom, broadband and electrical networks. Over the  last  15 years, the company has provided turnkey solutions, including everything from planning and project management to design and maintenance, to telecom operators, network owners and property owners, among others. Netel currently generates revenue of approx. SEK 1.5bn and has just over 340 employees at 25 offices in Sweden, Norway, Finland and the Baltic states.

The transaction, which is subject to approval by the competition authorities, is expected to be completed during July 2016.

Nixen - VULCAIN INGÉNIERIE Reinforces its Position on the Nuclear Market

Paris, June 6th, 2016 - Following the acquisition by NiXEN in 2014 of a majority interest in the company, Vulcain Ingénierie announces two strategic acquisitions to reinforce its position on the nuclear market and to pursue its international growth.

Following the opening of several subsidiaries in Europe, Asia and Africa, Vulcain Ingénierie pursues its active development strategy, notably internationally, through the acquisition of WDB and of a specialized in nuclear decommissioning engineering UK-based subsidiary of Oxand group.

• WDB is a French-based engineering company specialized in planning management and control command in the nuclear field. This build-up will extend Vulcain’s service offerings and reinforce its partnerships with the main French players, such as EDF. This operation will also allow WDB to speed up its development, both in France and internationally, with its existing clients as with Vulcain’s, and to attract new talents.
• Oxand Ltd, a UK-based subsidiary of Oxand group, is specialized in nuclear projects management, nuclear decommissioning and cost control. This acquisition provides an excellent strategic fit to Vulcain and will contribute to accelerate its development on one of the world’s most dynamic segment of the nuclear sector, where numerous projects are under way both in the nuclear power plants decommissioning area as well as in the new build area.

 “Vulcain has grown rapidly by providing the required skills and specialists for the major industrial projects in the energy sector. This is an important new stage in the development of our company and the synergies between our historical businesses and the new activities will reinforce our technical expertise and further extend the strategic partnerships with our main clients” explained Alban Guilloteau and Frédéric Grard, Managing Directors of Vulcain Ingénierie.

These acquisitions are part of the external growth strategy carried out by Vulcain in order to accelerate its growth in France and abroad while reinforcing its presence in specific energy sectors, such as nuclear, and enhancing its relations to targeted potential and existing clients.

 “These two operations represent a first step in the build-up strategy defined with the management when we took a majority share in Vulcain 18 months ago” said Jean-Paul Bernardini, CEO of NiXEN.

 “The company intends to actively pursue its external growth strategy through new acquisitions that are currently being analyzed” added Johann Le Duigou, Partner at NiXEN.

Wincove Leads Recapitalization of Hygrade Components

Boston, MA – May 27, 2016 – Wincove Private Holdings, LP (“Wincove”) announced today that it has led the recapitalization of Hygrade Metal Moulding Manufacturing Corp., d.b.a. Hygrade Components (“Hygrade” or the “Company”).

Headquartered in Bethlehem, PA, Hygrade is a leading provider of components used in the manufacture of residential and commercial windows and doors. Hygrade’s products, which include stiffeners, screen frames, muntin bars, spacers and other components, are used to improve the thermal efficiency and enhance the appearance and strength of windows and doors. The Company serves customers throughout the United States and Canada, and operates out of three strategically-located facilities in Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Oregon with over 150,000 square feet of manufacturing space.

“Hygrade has a 70+ year history of providing specialty components to the building products industry and has a well-deserved reputation for industry leading quality and service” said Michael McGovern, partner of Wincove.  “We are proud to be partnering with Vince Pagano, who will continue as CEO and as a substantial owner of Hygrade.  Together we will continue to expand the Company’s product portfolio and service offering for our customers, and our capital will be used to fuel future growth.”

Vince Pagano, President and CEO of Hygrade stated, “Hygrade is excited to partner with Wincove for this next phase of our Company’s evolution. Wincove has deep experience and a successful track record investing in and growing manufacturing and industrial distribution companies, and specifically with businesses serving the construction industries. Wincove’s long-term mindset and permanent capital base were especially attractive to us as we explored this partnership.  I have no doubt that this partnership will benefit Hygrade’s customers, employees and suppliers.”  For more information about Hygrade, please visit www.hygrademetal.com.

Wincove Leads Acquisition and Recapitalization of Bluff Manufacturing

New York, NY – May 23, 2016 – Wincove Private Holdings, LP (“Wincove”) announced today that it has recently led a recapitalization of Bluff Holdings, Inc., d.b.a. Bluff Manufacturing (“Bluff” or the “Company”), together with management.

Headquartered in Fort Worth, TX, Bluff is a leading provider of industrial equipment that enhances the safety and efficiency of loading docks and warehouses. The Company’s products, which include yard ramps, dock boards, dock levelers, safety rails, machine guards, mezzanines, stairways, work platforms and cantilever racks, are known industry-wide by the “Bluff Blue” markings, which have come to be synonymous with quality and excellence. Bluff serves the entire U.S., Canada, Central and South America, and the Caribbean through a broad distributor network supported by the Company’s five warehouses.

“Bluff has a 45+ year history of leadership in the loading dock and warehouse safety equipment industry, and customers recognize the Company’s products and service as unmatched,” said John Lenahan, Partner of Wincove.  “We are very excited to partner with Andrea Curreri, Bluff’s President, and the rest of the Bluff team.  We look forward to continuing to build this exceptional business together, both organically and through acquisition.”

“We are very pleased about our partnership with the Wincove team, who has a history of facilitating the growth of companies, resulting in substantial value creation. Everyone at Bluff is excited by the opportunities that will be presented through this partnership,” states Andrea Curreri, President of Bluff Manufacturing.

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