Bekaert and Element Partners, a Pennsylvania, US-based equity fund, signed an agreement today regarding the sale of Bekaert's Industrial Coatings activities to Element Partners. The transaction covers the production facilities in Deinze (Belgium) and Jiangyin (China), the maintenance activity at Spring preen (US), and the respective sales organization. The deal involves all 130 employees currently working in the Industrial Coatings platform. Later today, Element Partners also plans to sign for the acquisition of Soleras Ltd., a US-based company.
Bekaert Industrial Coatings is a total solution provider for rotatable sputter equipment. Bekaert IC offers the unique combination of sputter hardware, rotatable targets and sputter electronics for all PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition) applications.
While the business continued to grow successfully, technological synergies within Bekaert have proven to be limited over time. An in-depth analysis showed that the further growth potential of the IC business could be best secured by entrusting its future development to an organization combining the competences and market potential of two significant industry players. Both Bekaert Industrial Coatings and Soleras are active in the same markets, and have complementary technologies, end customers and geographic span.
The Industrial Coatings division accounted for less than 1.5% of Bekaert's consolidated sales in 2011, and had a profitability level in line with the long-term profitability guidance of the Group. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions. Bekaert and Element Partners expect to close the deal in the course of the first half of 2012.
The contemplated divestment of the Industrial Coatings activities is a confirmation of Bekaert's strategic focus on realizing sustainable profitable growth in activities related to the company's core technological competences: advanced metal transformation and coatings.
Bekaert (www.bekaert.com) is a global technological and market leader in advanced solutions based on metal transformation and coatings, and the world's largest independent manufacturer of drawn steel wire products. Bekaert (Euronext Brussels: BEKB) is a global company with headquarters in Belgium, employing 28 000 people worldwide. Serving customers in 120 countries, Bekaert pursues sustainable profitable growth in all its activities and generated combined sales of € 4.5 billion in 2010.
About Element Partners
Element Partners (www.elementpartners.com) is a leading growth equity firm investing in high-growth companies offering innovative products and services to the global energy, industrial and environmental markets. Element's team has over 125 combined years of experience and has successfully managed over US $1.2 billion in capital commitments spanning six investment partnerships, making Element one of the earliest and most experienced investors in these markets.
The foregoing release may contain forward-looking statements regarding the impact of the transaction on the financial statements of Bekaert. Such statements reflect the current views of management regarding future events, and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such statements. Bekaert is providing the information in this press release as of this date and does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this press release as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Bekaert disclaims any liability for statements made or published by third parties and does not undertake any obligation to correct inaccurate data, information, conclusions or opinions published by third parties in relation to this or any other press release issued by Bekaert.