Apax to sell GardaWorld interest to Rhône Capital, Stephan Cretier

U.S. private equity firm Rhône Capital has partnered with Stephan Crétier, chairman and CEO of Garda World Security Corp, to acquire the interest held in the company by Apax Partners. No financial terms were disclosed for the deal, which is expected to close in July. GardaWorld, a Montréal-based security services provider, was taken private by Apax, a U.K. private equity firm, in 2012 for $1.1 billion. The company said it has since doubled in size in terms of revenue. Rhône, which acquired a minority stake in GardaWorld last year, will increase its holding to 61 percent with the deal. Crétier and other senior managers will increase their holdings to about 39 percent.


Founder Stephan Cretier to Increase Ownership In GardaWorld

MONTREAL, QUEBEC–(Marketwired – March 24, 2017) – Garda World Security Corporation (“GardaWorld”), one of the world’s largest privately owned security and cash services providers, announced today that Stephan Crétier, along with certain members of management and an entity held by investment funds affiliated with Rhône Capital (“Rhône”), a global alternative investment management firm, have entered into a conditional purchase agreement with a subsidiary of funds advised by Apax Partners (“Apax”) to acquire all of Apax’s remaining shares of the parent company of GardaWorld. Closing of the transaction, if all conditions are satisfied or waived, is expected to occur during the quarter ending July 31, 2017.

“Apax has leveraged its financial expertise to support management in the growth of the company” highlighted Stephan Crétier. “The Board of Directors wishes to thank the Apax team for its contribution. Since November 2012, the company underwent exceptional growth, almost doubling in size in terms of its revenues and its employees. GardaWorld now operates in 29 countries in Africa, Middle East and Europe. The Management Team and myself are excited to continue our partnership with Rhône to build a true global Canadian Champion.”

Upon closing of the transaction, Apax will no longer own shares in GardaWorld’s parent company, while Stephan Crétier, Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of GardaWorld, will hold, along with certain management stockholders, approximately 39% (fully diluted) of the shares in GardaWorld’s parent company and Rhône will increase its holding to 61% (fully diluted). Each party will be subject to customary shareholder provisions for an investment of this type.

About GardaWorld

GardaWorld is one of the world’s largest privately owned security services providers, offering a range of highly focused business solutions including cash services, protective services and aviation services. GardaWorld’s more than 62,000 highly trained, dedicated professionals serve clients throughout North America, the Middle East, Africa and Europe. GardaWorld works across a broad range of sectors, including financial services, infrastructure, natural resources and retail, and services Fortune 500 companies, governments and humanitarian relief organizations. For more information, visit www.garda.com

About Rhône Capital

With over 20 years of investing experience, Rhône is a global alternative investment management firm with a focus on investments in market leading businesses with a pan-European or transatlantic presence and prospects for global expansion. Rhône, which is currently investing capital from its fifth private equity fund, has prior experience with service companies, as well as in the chemical, consumer product, food, packaging, specialty material and transportation sectors.

About Apax Partners

Apax Partners is one of the world’s leading private equity investment groups. It operates globally and has more than 30 years of investing experience. Apax Partners has advised funds that total over $40 billion around the world in aggregate. Funds advised by Apax invest in companies across four global sectors of Tech & Telco, Services, Healthcare and Consumer. These funds provide long-term equity financing to build and strengthen world-class companies. For further information about Apax, please visit www.apax.com.

Photo courtesy of Garda World Security Corp