3i Sells One Chemicals Company, KemFine, to Another

The global private equity firm 3i Group has sold the Helsinki-based chemicals company KemFine to CABB, a German chemicals company for an undislosed amount. 3i has owned KemFine since 2004.


3i, an international investor focused on private equity, infrastructure and debt management, and funds managed by 3i, have agreed to sell KemFine, a leading tier-one supplier to the fine chemicals market, to CABB, a German speciality chemicals company.

Headquartered in Helsinki, Finland, KemFine is a custom manufacturer of fine chemicals with a focus on intermediates and active ingredients mainly for the agrochemicals market.  The company has long-term relationships and supply agreements with leading agrochemical companies.  KemFine generated annual revenues of EUR81m in 2010 and employs approximately 190 staff in Helsinki and its production site in Kokkola, Finland.

3i and funds originally invested in KemFine (formerly Kemira Fine Chemicals) in September 2004.  During 3i’s investment period, KemFine has strengthened its customer relationships through new contract wins with key customers, increased its revenue by 80% and more than doubled its profit.  Moreover, the Kokkola production unit has continuously invested in its asset base and most recently in an environmentally friendly waste water treatment facility to improve KemFine’s cost position.

Fredrik Karlsson, Partner 3i, commented: “Over the last seven years, 3i has worked very closely with the KemFine management team to support the company’s successful journey to becoming an independent and leading fine chemicals business.”

Ulf Björkqvist, KemFine Chief Executive commented: “3i’s investment has enabled our business to establish a leading position in the market and create a well-diversified product portfolio.  As we move into the next stage of our development with CABB, we will be focused on working in partnership to grow our joint business and sharing our combined customer and supplier base.  This is a logical step for KemFine to further expand its field of expertise.”

Dr. Martin Wienkenhöver, CABB Chief Executive commented: “KemFine is absolutely the right partner to help us grow and develop the business.   This acquisition will further strengthen our leading market position, particularly in the area of custom manufacturing and tolling for the European and global life science majors.   The combination of KemFine and CABB will ensure even greater service for our customers.”