CAPZA Expansion invests Novarc

CAPZA has made a minority investment in French industrial group Novarc.

CAPZA joins the pool of historical investors including Bpifrance, BNP Paribas Développement and CASRA Capital, who are reinvesting alongside CAPZA. As part of this transaction, Amundi Private Equity Funds is selling its stake.

This transaction aims at backing the Group, which operates internationally around two activities (electrical safety equipment and maintenance products for the automotive and industrial sectors), in its "CAP 2025" strategic plan. It is made possible by AXA France's 500 million euros investment in the CAPZA Expansion fund to support the growth of SMEs and accelerate the economic recovery. 
 
Founded in 1993, Novarc has historically developed in the electrical safety market (design, manufacture and distribution of equipment for operators working on low, medium and high voltage networks) and then, it gradually diversified into the market of premium maintenance products for the automotive and industrial sectors. The group has a high-profile reputation, mainly thanks to a sustained product innovation strategy and privileged partnerships with its main customers.

Based in the French region of La Drôme, Novarc manufactures most of its products in France and Germany and markets them worldwide. The Group achieved a turnover of around EUR200 million in 2020, almost half of which was generated internationally.

Positioned as a leader in expanding niche markets, the Group has recorded a growth of more than 10 per cent per annum over the last ten years. As part of its "CAP 2025" plan, Novarc's ambition is to double its turnover with the involvement of CAPZA and its historical shareholders, an objective that the Group hopes to achieve through an extension of its product offering and a sustained acquisition strategy in France and Europe.

"We are very pleased to welcome CAPZA alongside our historical shareholders Bpifrance, BNP Développement and CASRA Capital, with whom we have achieved our "CAP 2020" objective. CAPZA's international network, its expertise in build-ups and its willingness to be an active and benevolent partner over the long term convinced us to choose them, as we move forward together towards our new strategic plan," says Jean-Noël Rey, CEO of the Novarc Group.

"We are delighted to be working alongside the Novarc teams to help them carry out their "CAP 2025" strategic plan. Novarc is a major French industrial group, and we fully support its growth ambitions in France and abroad. This is a good illustration of CAPZA Expansion's desire to support our regional mid-cap companies in accelerating their post-pandemic growth," says Guillaume Basquin and Frédéric Chiche, Partners and Co-Heads of CAPZA Expansion.

"We are very proud of the path taken by the Novarc group over the past five years, marked by strong international deployment, a dozen external growth operations and the strengthening of the company's human capital. As a long-term partner of Novarc, Bpifrance will continue to support its teams in the achievement of strategic projects alongside CAPZA, which we are very pleased to welcome to the group's shareholding,” says Alexis Guinard, Investment Director at Bpifrance.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), a real performance driver for Novarc, is at the heart of the company's development strategy. In this respect, almost 40 per cent of the group's employees are shareholders.

CAPZA's investment in Novarc is made through its CAPZA Expansion fund, created with the mandate given to CAPZA in 2020 by AXA France. With an allocation of EUR500 million, this fund aims at supporting the French economy and develop employment by supporting medium-sized companies throughout France in all sectors. Bpifrance via its MidCap team, BNP Paribas Développement and CASRA Capital, which have been shareholders since 2015, are reinvesting in this transaction.