Paine ends for Montagu

UK mid-market firm Montagu Private Equity has sold Stabilus, a German maker of gas springs, to US private equity house Paine & Partners. Financial details have not been officially announced, but reports place the transaction value at €500m.

Stabilus, headquartered in Koblenz, to the west of Frankfurt, develops, produces and distributes gas springs, hydraulic vibration dampers, hydraulic doorstays and automatic opening and closing systems for doors, trunk lids and tailgates.

With a workforce of around 3,300 worldwide, 1,600 in Germany, the company produces more than 132 million gas springs and dampers per year, and sales revenues for the year 2006/2007 were just below €400m.

Montagu acquired Stabilus from Demag Holding following an MBO in 2004. In the intervening period the company has reported substantial growth as well as repositioning its production network, with expanded production facilities and new factories.

Nico Helling, director of Montagu in Germany, said: “Stabilus was a highly encouraging investment for the Montagu funds. We are convinced that the business will continue to see outstanding development under the stewardship of its future owners. As in the past, we believe Stabilus has strong potential, and we would like to wish the management team and the company’s employees all the best and every success for the future.”

Paine & Partners, formerly Fox Paine Management III, is based in San Francisco and New York, and this deal marks the firm’s second deal overall and first in Europe since it rebranded in January.