KKR has acquired an undisclosed position in the German Flavours and Ingredients business of Rudolf Wild GmbH & Co. The deal will not result in management changes, and is designed to facilitate a public listing for Rudolf Wild, an 80-year-old, family-owned business.
After nearly 80 years as a successful family business Rudolf Wild GmbH & Co. KG will begin a new phase: The owner, Dr. Hans-Peter Wild, has now taken the first step on the way to becoming a public company – a decision initially taken in 2008. As of January 1, 2010 he sold shares of the German Flavours and Ingredients Business to KKR including the subsidiaries in a total of 11 countries. It has been agreed that the currently successful operational business will continue to be managed by the WILD Management. Therefore; there will be no changes in the top management.
“This strategic partnership will allow us to tap into the capital markets and financing sources that have previously been unavailable to us, thereby driving more rapid growth of our business. KKR is a strong partner with extensive global expertise and will assist WILD in its focused expansion and strengthening of our businesses going forward” said Dr. Hans-Peter Wild. In extending its reach, WILD will target foreign markets relying on KKR to support WILD’s financial positions and create new growth potential through its global network and acquisition.
“The strategic partnership between KKR and WILD, one of the global market’s leading manufacturers of natural flavour ingredients for the food and beverage industry, is an innovative type of private equity transaction that will facilitate significant growth opportunities worldwide. We are excited to be WILD’s partner of choice during this exciting growth stage”, says Johannes Huth, European head of KKR.
The fruit preparation businesses of Rudolf Wild GmbH & Co. KG in Germany, France and Poland will not be affected by the announced transaction. Also Deutsche SiSi Werke with its leading brand Capri-Sonne/Capri-Sun and INDAG (the technology center of WILD) will continue to be fully owned by Dr. Wild.
After the transfer of shares of the German business Wild and KKR plan to form, in several independent steps, a global flavors business in which Dr. Hans-Peter Wild will be the majority shareholder.
WILD, founded in 1931, is the world’s leading private producer of natural ingredients. The WILD product portfolio of natural-flavor ingredients includes full flavor and ingredient solutions for the beverage industry, known as the flavor system as well as individual components such as flavors and extracts, natural colors, concentrates, sweetening systems, as well as specialty ingredients, such as functional flavors. Through its allied companies in the US and Canada, WILD is also a supplier for cereal, snack, and processed foods in the American markets. WILD’s competence is based on the knowledge of global supply markets as well as technologically advanced production processes. For more information, visit WILD’s website at www.wild.de.
Founded in 1976 by Henry Kravis and George Roberts, KKR is a leading global alternative asset manager with $54.8 billion in assets under management, over 600 people and 13 offices around the world as of September 30, 2009. KKR manages assets through a variety of investment funds and accounts covering multiple asset classes. KKR seeks to create value by bringing operational expertise to its portfolio companies and through active oversight and monitoring of its investments. KKR complements its investment expertise and strengthens interactions with investors through its client relationships and capital markets platforms. KKR is publicly traded through KKR & Co. (Guernsey) L.P. (Euronext Amsterdam: KKR). For additional information, please visit KKR’s website at www.kkr.com.