Nordic Capital and CVC Capital Partners have sold their remaining 16.1 percent stake in Cloetta in a private placement. The buyers were institutional investors in Sweden and other countries. The transaction was made at a price of SEK 19.40 per B share. Carnegie Investment Bank and Handelsbanken Capital Markets served as underwriters in the offering. Cloetta is a confectionary company that serves the Nordic region. the Netherlands and Italy.
Nordic Capital Fund V (“Nordic Capital”) and funds advised by CVC Capital Partners (“CVC”) have through their respective holding companies, Cidron Pord S.A.R.L. (“Cidron”) and Godis Holding S.A.R.L. (“Godis), sold their entire holding of 16.1 per cent of the shares in Cloetta AB (“Cloetta”) in a placement to institutional investors in Sweden and other countries. The placement was made at a price of SEK 19.40 per B-share. There has been an extremely high level of interest among investors in acquiring Cloetta shares.
Nordic Capital and CVC acquired Leaf in March 2005 with the goal of growing the company and strengthening its competitiveness. Leaf and listed Cloetta merged in February 2012. The merged company has since then been listed on Nasdaq OMX Stockholm as Cloetta AB (publ.).
“We want to extend our sincere thanks to Cloetta’s management and employees for all of their hard work over the years. We have tremendous confidence in them and in their ability to continue developing the company. It is particularly satisfying that Leaf relocated its headquarters to Sweden under Nordic Capital and CVC’s ownership, so that Cloetta – that has some of the best-known consumer brands in the Nordics – now can continue to grow from its base in Sweden,” said Hans Eckerström, member of Cloetta’s Board of Directors and Partner, NC Advisory AB, advisor to the Nordic Capital funds.
“Nordic Capital and CVC have now achieved their goals as owners. Leaf was merged with Cloetta following a period during which the company’s management structure was strengthened, a new factory was established in Slovakia and a wide range of new products was launched. After management’s successful integration of the businesses, which laid the foundation for profitable growth, it is now a natural time for Nordic Capital and CVC to step aside as owners. We are pleased that continuity is assured for the company with Malfors Promotor as the principal owner,” said Peter Törnquist, member of Cloetta’s Board of Directors and Partner at CVC.
The brands owned by Cloetta include some of the most popular and well-known confectionery brands in each of its markets. Cloetta is a market leader in the Nordic region and several European countries, notably the Netherlands and Italy. Cloetta’s products – which include some of its markets’ strongest brands such as Läkerol, Cloetta, Jenkki, Kexchoklad, Red Band, Sperlari and Malaco – are sold in over 50 countries.
The sale comprised a total of 46.4 million Cloetta B-shares at a value of SEK 901 million, of which 25.9 million B-shares (pro rata share of 56%) were sold by Nordic Capital and 20.5 million B-shares (pro rata share of 44%) were sold by CVC. Following the sale neither Nordic Capital nor CVC hold any Cloetta shares.
The sale was conducted through a book-building process with the price set at SEK 19.40 per B-share. The shares were distributed among several institutions in Sweden, other European countries and the US. Interest from investors was extremely high.
Nordic Capital and CVC owned a total of 57% of Cloetta’s shares in November 2012. The holding has been progressively reduced since then.
Carnegie Investment Bank and Handelsbanken Capital Markets served as Joint Bookrunners in n the transaction.
The shareholder agreement between Nordic Capital, CVC and Malfors has expired. The composition of the new board of directors will be determined in conjunction with Cloetta’s 2014 Annual General Meeting.