UK private equity firm Bridgepoint acquires France’s Flexitallic Group

UK-based private equity group Bridgepoint Capital Ltd has agreed to acquire French sealing solutions provider The Flexitallic Group from French buyout firm Eurazeo PME via a EUR450m (USD588.9m) deal, the target said.

Flexitallic manufactures and supplies industrial static sealing products such as industrial gaskets and dynamic and static packings to the oil and gas, power generation, chemical and petrochemical industries. Since 2006, when Eurazeo bought a majority stake in the company, Flexitallic has acquired six firms and bolstered its revenues eleven times to EUR210m, it said.

The sale will allow Flexitallic to continue its technological development and geographic expansion in the traditional markets in the US and Europe, as well as in other markets, such as China, it noted, adding that it intended to double its size in the next five years.

According to the buyer, the business being acquired offers significant growth opportunities in North America, where the group already operates, and also in Asia, Australia and South America.

Under the terms of the deal, Eurazeo will keep a minority stake in the business. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and is seen closing in July.

UK sponsor Bridgepoint closes acquisition of Compagnie du Ponant

UK-based private equity group Bridgepoint Capital Limited said on Monday it had completed the purchase of Compagnie du Ponant, a French luxury cruise company renowned for its specialist polar cruises, without giving information on the value of the deal.

Bridgepoint signed an agreement on the deal on 31 July. The vendors are French maritime transport services group CMA CGM Group and its parent company, Beirut-based Merit Corp.

Compagnie du Ponant, which was set up in 1988, operates three luxury ships and expects the delivery of a fourth one in June 2013. Its vessels, with 32 to 132 cabins, sail particularly in the Arctic and the Antarctic. In 2011, the company carried 20,000 passengers and generated revenues of EUR80m (USD100.5m) with over 580 employees.

According to Bridgepoint, the polar cruise market offers significant growth opportunities as it is supported by rich customers in Europe and the US who have been less susceptible to the macroeconomic conditions. It added that it would provide resources to support the acquired company’s development and international growth.

The buyer was advised by Bucephale Finance, Ashurst LLP, Boston Consulting Group Inc, Ernst and Young LLP and Arsene Taxand on the deal, whereas Willkie Farr Gallagher LLP served as advisor to CMA CGM and Merit.

Bridgepoint focuses on the acquisition of companies, which are valued at up to EUR1bn and operate in attractive sectors with the potential to grow organically or through acquisition. Bridgepoint has invested in sectors such as business services, consumer, financial services, healthcare, media and industrial sectors. It has offices in Frankfurt, Istanbul, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Stockholm and Shanghai.