Altor Fund III (“Altor”) has entered into an exclusive process with the intention to acquire a majority stake in Rossignol Group (“Rossignol”), the world’s second largest ski equipment player.
Rossignol is the owner of six leading winter sport brands; Rossignol and Dynastar skis, Look bindings, Lange boots, Kerma poles and Risport figure skates. Rossignol in 2012 had close to EUR 210 million in turnover and employs roughly 1,200 people with headquarters in Moirans in France.
Altor’s rationale behind the acquisition is to use some of the experience from the successful turnaround of Helly Hansen, which was acquired in 2006 and has since improved profitability from loss making to industry leading margins. While Rossignol already is making a healthy profit, Altor believes that there are opportunities for continued improvement and more focus on growth in existing and new categories.
“Rossignol is an iconic brand with roots back to when Abel Rossignol produced its first pair of skis in 1907. The group’s other brands, Dynastar, Lange and Look are also truly distinctive in their respective categories. We are truly enthusiastic about working with the company and its management team to accelerate growth in all these categories.” said Hugo Maurstad, Partner at Altor Equity Partners.
Mr Maurstad is moving to central Europe in conjunction with the acquisition to be able to work more closely with Rossignol but also with other bolt-on acquisitions in Europe that increasingly gets important for the Altor strategy.
“We are proud of what Rossignol has achieved to date, and share the view that we have many attractive growth opportunities ahead of us. We look forward to working with our new majority owner, who shares our strategic perspectives, enthusiasm and understand the winter sports business. I believe that together we will be a powerful team”, said Rossignol’s CEO, Bruno Cercley
Altor is proposing to acquire Rossignol group together with management, Weber Investment, and the Boix-Vives family, who used to own Rossignol Group from 1955 to 2005. These minority shareholders will own around 20% of the company, while Altor will own the remaining 80%.
Subject to certain closing conditions including the final approval of the applicable government authorities, the transaction will be fully effective before or during the fall of 2013.
For further information, please contact:
Hugo Maurstad, Altor Equity Partners, +47 90 10 43 08
Mathieu Collet, Euros / Agency (on behalf of Rossignol), +33 6 11 08 19 93
Altor Equity Partners act as investment advisor to the Altor funds. Since inception, the Altor funds have invested in close to 40 companies with a committed capital of EUR 3,800 million. The investments have been made in Nordic mid-cap companies with focus on value creation through growth initiatives and operational improvements. Among the investments are Lindorff, Helly Hansen, Apotek Hjärtat, Carnegie, Papyrus, Dustin, Qmatic, Piab, Byggmax, Ålö, Max Matthiessen, Elixia and CTEK.
About the ROSSIGNOL Group
The Rossignol Group, headed by Bruno Cercly, designs, manufactures and markets a broad range of sliding winter sport equipment. The global headquarters are located in the French Alps near Grenoble and houses a portfolio of strong and complementary brands with Rossignol, Dynastar, Lange, Look, Risport and Kerma.