Frankfurt/New York, 10 April 2014: Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division announced today that it has partnered with Koch Equity Development LLC, a subsidiary of Koch Industries, Inc., to acquire shares representing 100% of Flint Group’s share capital from funds advised by private equity firm CVC Capital Partners. Koch Equity Development has agreed to invest with Goldman Sachs in a newly formed entity that will acquire Flint Group.
Flint Group is a leading global supplier of inks and other print consumables such as flexographic printing plates, blankets, image transfer products and chemicals for press rooms, to the packaging and the print media industries. The company has a global footprint and is the number one or number two supplier in most of the market segments it serves. Flint Group operates 137 sites in 40 countries and employs some 6,600 people.
“The management team of Flint Group is excited about this planned new ownership, and the opportunities this now presents,” says Antoine Fady, CEO of Flint Group. “The investment by Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking and Koch is a clear vote of confidence in our vision, strategic plans, and ‘can do’ culture. Flint Group’s fundamental dedication to safety, sustainability, integrity and compliance will continue to form the foundation of all of our business activities.”
Martin Hintze, Co-head of Corporate Equity Investing in Europe of Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division says: “The acquisition of Flint Group fits well into our strategy of investing in leading global franchises and growing them organically and through acquisitions. We look forward to working in partnership with Koch Equity Development and Flint Group’s strong management team to execute on their strategy.”
“We believe Flint Group is uniquely positioned to capture growth in its attractive printed packaging markets while at the same time continuing to benefit from strong and resilient performance of its print media business. With a significantly improved capital structure, Flint Group is best positioned to pursue its ambitious growth plans to further strengthen its market leading positions,” adds Matthias Hieber, Head of Corporate Equity Investing in the German Speaking Region of Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division.
“Flint Group is an exciting opportunity for Koch Equity Development,” says Brett Watson, managing director of Koch Equity Development. He adds, “Flint Group is a global leader with a clear strategy and a management team that has a consistent record of delivering results.”
“Partnering with top-tier firms like Goldman Sachs and investing in competitively advantaged businesses with high quality management teams is consistent with Koch’s investment strategy,” adds Matt Flamini, president of Koch Equity Development. “We look forward to working with Goldman Sachs and Flint Group to assist the company in transitioning to its next phase of growth.”
Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division and Koch Equity Development will support the strategy developed by the Flint Group’s management team as it pursues a targeted business mix evolution towards the more attractive and higher growth printed packaging market while maintaining Flint Group’s strong position in the resilient print media business.
Chris Wildmoser, Partner of CVC, notes that “For almost 10 years, CVC has helped to build Flint Group through a series of acquisitions into the global leader it is today. We are pleased that, with Goldman Sachs and Koch Equity Development, we have found new owners who will continue to pursue this strategy in further developing the company."
Mr. Fady concludes that “the transition will be seamless for Flint Group’s customers, employees and suppliers. Flint Group’s vision to be the print consumable supplier of choice to the global packaging and printing industries will remain firmly in place. With its unique product portfolio and market-focused approach, Flint Group will continue to provide exceptional value to customers around the world.”
This sale remains subject to customary closing conditions and should be completed by the second half of 2014.
About Flint Group
Flint Group is dedicated to serving the global printing and packaging industry. The company develops, manufactures and markets an extensive portfolio of printing consumables, including: a vast range of conventional and energy curable inks and coatings for most offset, flexographic and gravure applications; pressroom chemicals, printing blankets and sleeves for offset printing; photopolymer printing plates and sleeves, plate-making equipment and flexographic sleeve systems; pigments and additives for use in inks and other colourant applications. With a strong customer focus, unmatched service and support, and superior products, Flint Group strives to provide exceptional value, consistent quality and continuous innovation to customers around the world.
Headquartered in Luxembourg, Flint Group employs some 6,600 people. Revenues for 2013 were € 2.2 billion (US $2.9 billion). On a worldwide basis, the company is the number one or number two supplier in most of the market segments it serves. For more information, please visit www.flintgrp.com
About Koch Equity Development
Koch Equity Development LLC is the acquisition and investment subsidiary of Koch Industries, Inc. Based in Wichita, Kan., Koch Industries is one of the largest private companies in America with annual revenues of about $115 billion. It owns a diverse group of companies involved in refining, chemicals and biofuels; forest and consumer products; fertilizers; polymers and fibers; process and pollution control equipment and technologies; commodity trading; minerals; energy; ranching; glass; and investments. In 2013, Koch companies employed about 60,000 people in the United States and paid compensation and benefits totaling $4.8 billion. From January 2009 to present, Koch companies earned nearly 800 awards for safety, environmental excellence, community stewardship, innovation, and customer service.
About Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division
Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division (“MBD”) is the primary center for Goldman Sachs’ long term principal investing activity, and Goldman Sachs has operated this business as an integral part of the firm for more than 25 years. The group invests in equity and credit across corporate, real estate and infrastructure strategies. Since 1986, the group has raised over $125 billion of capital to invest across a number of geographies, industries and transaction types. With eight offices in six countries around the world, MBD is one of the largest managers of private capital globally, offering deep expertise and long-standing relationships with companies, investors, entrepreneurs and financial intermediaries around the globe. MBD has extensive experience investing in German blue chip companies, including Kion (material handling), Kabel Deutschland (cable television), Cognis (specialty chemicals), Messer Griesheim (industrial gases) and Xella (building materials).
Goldman Sachs is one of the leading global investment banks with activities in the areas investment banking, securities and investment management. The diversified client base comprises industrial companies, banks, insurance companies, governments and wealthy individuals. Founded 1869 in New York, Goldman Sachs is today one of the oldest and largest investment banks globally.
Further information on Goldman Sachs can be found on the website: www.goldmansachs.com
About CVC Capital Partners
CVC is a leading international private equity firm. Founded in 1981, CVC today has a network of 20 offices and some 300 employees throughout Europe, Asia and the US. CVC manages funds on behalf of over 300 investors including pension funds, financial institutions, sovereign wealth funds and other investors. To date, CVC has secured commitments of over US$66 billion in funds and has completed over 300 investments in a wide range of industries and countries across the globe, with an aggregate transaction value of US$172 billion. CVC Funds currently own over 55 companies worldwide, which generate over US$120 billion in revenues and employ around 400,000 people.