Equistone erwirbt United Initiators

Equistone acquires United Initiators

17 Aug 2016

Equistone Partners Europe ("Equistone"), one of Europe's leading mid-market private equity investors today announces that it has acquired a majority stake in United Initiators ("UI"), investing alongside its current management. Equistone has acquired the business from Vision Capital and Speyside Equity for an undisclosed sum. Headquartered in Pullach, Germany, UI is the largest focused global producer of speciality chemical initiators.

With over a century of history, UI globally offers a broad range of organic peroxides, persulfates and selected speciality chemicals. Its broad and diverse portfolio comprises products across four specific business segments: speciality polymers, thermosets, high polymers and chemical specialities. The company employs 600 full-time employees and operates seven production facilities across Europe, North America and the Asia‐Pacific region. The company has a highly diversified blue chip customer base spanning local and global markets; revenues in 2015 totalled EUR 236 million.

UI’s products are highly essential ingredients for many applications and products within daily life including hair bleaching, disinfection, denture cleaning and teeth whitening. Industrial applications comprise polymer manufacturing and processing, etching of printed circuit boards, chemical synthesis, oil and gas exploration, soil remediation and many more.

Ed Hoozemans, CEO of United Initiators, commented: “On behalf of all colleagues at United Initiators I would like to express our gratitude to Vision Capital and Speyside for supporting our success over the past years. We are now really looking forward to the partnership with Equistone, a capital-strong, experienced and successful mid-market investor. Together we can build on the strong foundations we have in place, achieve further expansion in our core Western and Asian markets, as well as extend our product and application range.”

Dr. Marc Arens, Partner at Equistone, said: “With strong technological and market know-how, excellent customer relations and a history of more than a hundred years, United Initiators has established a leading global market position. With our extensive expertise in further developing medium-sized enterprises, together with the management and the staff of United Initiators we want to capitalise on new opportunities and support its global growth strategy.”

Dave Lamb, Head of the European Investment Team at Vision Capital, said: “United Initiators has undergone an impressive transformation over the last five years, benefiting from two successful bolt-on acquisitions, strengthening the management team and significant investment in the company’s production facilities, including a new plant in China. The management team has shown great passion and drive expanding the business, building the customer base and inspiring their people. I believe the business has a strong and prosperous future ahead, and wish them every success, supported by their new investors.”

Dr. Marc Arens, Dr. Katja Mühlhäuser and Maximilian Göppert led the transaction for Equistone Partners Europe. Equistone was advised by N+1 (M&A, Debt), Latham & Watkins (Financial EPE), Ashurst (Banking), P+P Pöllath + Partners (Legal Due Diligence, SPA), EY (Financial and Tax Due Diligence), Novumed (Commercial Due Diligence), Willis Towers Watson (Insurance Due Diligence) and HPC (Environmental Due Diligence).

Dave Lamb, Samer Cortas and Lennart Paap led the transaction for Vision Capital. The sellers were advised by Jefferies (M&A), PJT Partners (M&A), Freshfields (Legal Due Diligence, SPA), PwC (Financial and Tax Due Diligence), LEK (Commercial Due Diligence), Environ (Environmental Due Diligence) and Aon (Insurance Due Diligence).

The financial terms of the deal are undisclosed. The completion of the transaction is subject to competition authority approval.

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