Silver Lake Kraftwerk has put $40.1 million into recycled plastics processing company friedola®Tech. Silver Lake Kraftwerk is the energy investment unit of Silver Lake. Under the terms of the deal, private equity firm WHEB Partners is selling its majority stake in the company to Silver Lake. WHEB remains a shareholder. Other shareholders include Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, which also co-led the recent transaction.
Silver Lake Kraftwerk, a leading global growth capital investment strategy focused on energy and resource innovation, today announced a commitment of €31 million (USD$40.1 million) in friedola®Tech, a premier recycled plastics processing company that produces high-quality, environmentally-friendly products and components for the automotive and packaging industries. Silver Lake Kraftwerk is the energy investment strategy of Silver Lake, the world’s leading investor in the global technology industry.
The investment will provide growth capital to enable further product innovation, development in key market segments and expansion into new geographic regions, including the opening of a world-class manufacturing facility in Greenville, South Carolina.
Under the terms of the transaction, WHEB Partners, a European-based resource efficiency private equity firm, has agreed to sell its majority stake in friedola®Tech to Silver Lake Kraftwerk while remaining an important shareholder. Once the transaction has closed, Silver Lake Kraftwerk will become the majority owner, alongside existing co-investor Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), which co-led the transaction and increased its ownership of friedola®Tech. This transaction marks the first co-investment between Silver Lake and KPCB.
Based in Geismar, Germany, friedola®Tech is a leading manufacturer and marketer of recycled plastic products with a focus on the automotive and packaging sectors. The company supplies lightweight, recyclable and environmentally-friendly plastic solutions to a variety of industries and boasts an innovative and proprietary product portfolio, including their signature product platform, CON-Pearl. As a Tier-1 supplier, friedola®Tech’s plastic solutions are a key component in the lightweight efforts of a number of their customers, including leading car manufacturers.
A leader in innovative environmental technologies, friedola®Tech directly contributes to improved emissions and fuel economy standards in the automotive industry, and greater efficiency in the logistics and packaging sectors.
“We are excited to partner with WHEB and KPCB as investors in friedola®Tech,” said Josh Raffaelli, Partner, Silver Lake Kraftwerk. “There is a growing global market for engineered plastics and industrial products that are lightweight and reusable. friedola®Tech is uniquely positioned as a market leader in this industry and we are eager to support their growth and expansion.”
Silver Lake Kraftwerk invests in companies that leverage technology and business model innovation in the energy and resource industries. Its stake in friedola®Tech marks Silver Lake Kraftwerk’s first major investment in resource efficiency and its first investment outside of the United States.
“We look forward to working with Silver Lake Kraftwerk, KPCB and WHEB Partners as we position friedola®Tech for continued growth and expansion,” said Christoph Holzapfel, Chief Executive Officer, friedola®Tech. “With Silver Lake’s global presence, technology expertise and focus on value creation, we are confident the firm will make an excellent partner as we grow our business,” added Werner Eisenhardt, Chief Financial Officer, friedola®Tech.
“friedola®Tech is a great success story,” said Jorg Sperling, a Partner at WHEB Partners. “The company was an under-appreciated asset after facing serious challenges during the 2008/09 crisis in the global automotive industry. By stabilizing the company financially and by pursuing growth aggressively, friedola®Tech is now the leading provider of highly innovative, recyclable and lightweight plastic components used in a variety of industries. The company is now ready to expand in the United States and we are thrilled to bring such a renowned investor, Silver Lake Kraftwerk, on board to support the company’s internationalization.”
Advisers on the deal were Blackwood Capital Group (M&A support for WHEB Partners and friedola®Tech), Taylor Wessing (legal adviser to friedola®Tech), mb+p (Commercial Due Diligence), Deloitte (Financial Due Diligence), WilmerHale (legal adviser to Silver Lake Kraftwerk) and Hogan Lovells (legal adviser to Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers).
The deal is currently pending anti-trust approval by the German authorities.
About Silver Lake Kraftwerk
Silver Lake Kraftwerk (SLK) is an initiative of Silver Lake Partners, the global leader in private investments in technology and technology-enabled industries, and strategic partner Soros Fund Management, LLC. SLK is designed to provide growth capital to late-stage innovators in the energy and resource sectors.
About Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) has backed entrepreneurs in more than 500 ventures leading to 150 IPOs, 350,000 jobs and a deep strategic network. The firm has helped build pioneering companies like Align, Amazon, Electronic Arts, Genentech, Genomic Health, Google, Intuit, Juniper Networks, Netscape, Symantec, VeriSign and WebMD. KPCB partners serve on the boards of Amazon, Apple, Bloom Energy, Flipboard, Foundation Medicine, Google, Hewlett-Packard, Nest, Square, Tesaro and Zynga, among others. KPCB accelerates the success of entrepreneurs with a team of partners delivering company-building services including strategy, operational scaling, recruiting, business development and product delivery. The firm invests in all stages from seed and incubation to growth companies. KPCB operates from offices in Menlo Park, San Francisco, Shanghai and Beijing. http://www.kpcb.com.
About WHEB Partners
WHEB Partners is a European private equity manager that invests in resource efficiency companies with high growth potential. It was founded in 2003 and has offices in London and Munich. The company manages GBP130m in two private equity funds on behalf of institutional and private clients.