Silverfleet Capital sells Coventya

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The pan-European private equity firm Silverfleet Capital, through one of its portfolio companies, Electrum Holding Sàrl, has entered into an exclusivity agreement with Element Solutions Inc, for the purpose of the sale of its stake in Coventya, an international specialty chemicals business headquartered in France, generating a 2.5x gross money multiple. Completion of the transaction is expected to occur by Q3 or Q4 2021. 

Founded in 1927, Coventya is a leading developer and manufacturer of specialty chemicals used for surface treatment within the General Metal Finishing plating industry.  The firm operates in 60 countries across four continents, employing c700 staff based in 12 production sites and 10 R&D centres.  The company produces a wide range of products used in numerous sectors including automotive, luxury and consumer goods, construction, aviation, data storage and energy. 

Silverfleet acquired a majority stake in Coventya in 2016, having seen an opportunity to build a global player of scale in an attractive and profitable niche market.  Leveraging its experience in the industrial service and chemical manufacturing sectors, Silverfleet identified the rising demand for lightweight plating solutions for evolving technologies, in particular aluminum surface treatment and plating on plastics.   

During Silverfleet’s ownership, Coventya opened a new production site in China and expanded its sales in Asia; increased its investment in technology and R&D to expand its product range into high growth end-markets such as lightweight parts for electric or hybrid cars; expanded its international footprint by completing four acquisitions in Turkey, Germany, and the US; and improved operational efficiencies to enhance pricing, raw material purchases and SG&A monitoring.  Additionally, Silverfleet has helped drive Coventya’s ESG programme through initiatives including: the introduction of new environmental KPIs, automating safety reporting and improving the company’s governance policies, amongst others. 

During its hold period, Coventya has significantly increased revenue and EBITDA and is forecast to generate revenues of approximately EUR160 million in 2021. 

Christian Süss, Partner at Silverfleet Capital, says: “We are thrilled with Coventya’s achievements over the past five years, during which time we have executed our investment thesis by expanding the company’s global footprint, diversifying its product portfolio by leveraging superior technologies, and enhancing its high-quality service offering to end customers. Our thanks go to the Coventya management team who have not only completed the M&A with precision but grown the platform organically to fulfil the business’s potential.  It was always part of our value creation plan to build a company which would be highly attractive to international trade acquirers. We wish the team every success in the coming years.” 

Erik Weyls, Chief Executive of Coventya , says: “It has been a pleasure to work with the Silverfleet team over this exciting period to create a business of global scale with the industry profile, technology-led product range and distribution capabilities that will enable us to continue building market share.” 

Torsten Becker, Chief Financial Officer of Coventya, adds: “Silverfleet’s market expertise, strategic guidance and financial support have proved invaluable in taking us to the next level, and I am proud to say that Coventya is now in a stronger position than ever. We look forward to a bright future with Element as we embark on the next stage of our growth.” 

Silverfleet was advised by Natixis Partners, Latham, PWC, Paksoy and Eight Advisory. 

The Silverfleet team that worked on the exit included Gareth Whiley, Christian Süss and Jennifer Regehr.