Apollo Global Management agreed to buy Kem One Group, which produces polyvinyl chloride (PVC) used mainly in construction, packaging and medical applications, as well as caustic soda. The deal is expected to close by the end of the year.
Alain de Krassny and Apollo Global Management (NYSE: APO) (together with its consolidated subsidiaries, “Apollo”) declare that they have entered into exclusive negotiations for the sale of the Kem One Group to funds managed by affiliates of Apollo (the “Apollo Funds”). These discussions are taking place through De Krassny GmbH and the Apollo Funds. This proposed sale, for which the two parties signed a put option agreement, as is typical in French M&A transactions, on September 10th, is expected to be finalized by the end of the year.
With 1,400 employees and 8 industrial sites located across France and Spain, Kem One is a leading European producer of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), used mainly in construction, packaging, and medical applications, and caustic soda. Kem One has leading positions in both mass and suspension PVC in Europe, and recognized expertise in specialty PVC, including paste PVC and post-chlorinated PVC.
Under Mr. de Krassny’s leadership, Kem One has undergone a complete transformation since 2014, executing on a long-term strategy to improve the quality and reliability of its production facilities, lower production costs, and reduce its environmental footprint. The strategy was anchored by an ambitious investment program of more than €500 million, with three strategic projects:
The conversion and upgrade of the electrolysis units of Kem One’s Lavéra plant, completed in 2017
The construction of an ethylene storage terminal at Kem One’s Fos-sur-Mer plant, to be finalized in Q4 2021
The conversion and upgrade of the electrolysis units at Fos-sur-Mer which will be launched in the coming months and would be completed under Apollo’s ownership
Mr. de Krassny declared: “I am very proud of what we have accomplished since the end of 2013. Today, Kem One has robust foundations. I am convinced that Apollo’s strategic ambitions for Kem One will enable the further acceleration of Kem One’s development.”
Mr. Samuel Feinstein, Partner at Apollo, said: “Alain has built Kem One into one of Europe’s leading chlorovinyls producers. We are tremendously excited to build on Alain’s legacy and further grow and develop the business, whether it is through the planned conversion of the Fos plant to enhance cost and energy efficiencies or the many avenues we see for inorganic growth. At Apollo, we have a long track record in the industry and are excited to leverage our expertise and fund capital to support the talented team at Kem One in this next phase of growth.”
Mr. Frédéric Chalmin, CEO of Kem One, commented: “I am proud to have supported the Kem One project alongside Mr. de Krassny, and also of the results we have achieved. This success allows us to envision a new phase of our development today thanks to the financial strength of Apollo, and I am excited to approach this new stage.”
The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
The transaction is subject to the customary approval of the competition and regulatory authorities and to the information and consultation process of the bodies representing the personnel concerned.
Kem One and Mr. de Krassny were advised by Evercore as sole strategic and financial advisor, and Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP as legal advisor.
The Apollo Funds were advised by Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP and Bredin Prat SAS as legal advisors. Debt financing for the transaction will be provided by J.P. Morgan AG, Barclays, HSBC, and RBC Capital Markets. Barclays, HSBC and RBC Capital Markets are also serving as financial advisors to the Apollo Funds in connection with the transaction.
About KEM ONE
KEM ONE is a leading European producer of PVC, caustic soda, and chlorinated derivatives. Its industrial footprint is primarily located in France (Saint-Fons, Balan, Saint-Auban, Berre, Lavéra, Fos-sur-Mer, Vauvert) and in Spain (Hernani). The company has nearly 1,400 employees, divided between its industrial sites, its R&D laboratories, its sales offices in Europe, and its head office in Lyon. The company is the leading French producer of low carbon hydrogen. To learn more, visit www.kemone.com
Apollo is a high-growth, global alternative asset manager. We seek to provide our clients excess return at every point along the risk-reward spectrum from investment grade to private equity with a focus on three business strategies: yield, hybrid and opportunistic. Through our investment activity across our fully integrated platform, we serve the retirement income and financial return needs of our clients, and we offer innovative capital solutions to businesses. Our patient, creative, knowledgeable approach to investing aligns our clients, businesses we invest in, our employees and the communities we impact, to expand opportunity and achieve positive outcomes. As of June 30, 2021, Apollo had approximately $472 billion assets under management. To learn more, visit www.apollo.com.