Platinum Equity has agreed to acquire Madrid-based Urbaser, a provider of environmental services, from China Tianying Inc. The value of the deal is about $4.2 billion. The deal is expected to close during the third quarter of this year.
LOS ANGELES and MADRID (June 6, 2021) – Platinum Equity today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Urbaser, one of the world’s largest providers of environmental services, from China Tianying Inc. for an enterprise value of approximately $4.2 billion (€3.5 billion). The sale is expected to be completed during the third quarter of 2021, subject to China Tianying shareholder and customary regulatory approvals.
Urbaser is a leading global environmental management company oriented towards sustainability and innovation, serving more than 70 million people in 25 countries through a network of more than 50,000 employees. Currently, it is responsible for cleaning more than 8 million kilometers of streets in different cities around the world and maintaining 25 million square meters of green areas. It operates 133 waste treatment facilities with a total of 20 million tons treated; produces 1,500 GWh of electrical energy from waste and in the last year has avoided the emission of almost 2 million tons of CO2 equivalent.
Founded in 1990 and headquartered in Madrid, Spain, Urbaser’s core business comprises three segments – Urban Services (waste collection, street cleaning and water management), Municipal Waste Treatment, and Industrial Waste Treatment – concentrated primarily in Spain, Chile, Argentina, France, and the Nordic region. The company generated approximately $2.8 billion (€2.3 billion) in revenue for fiscal year 2020.
“Urbaser is a complex company that is both vital service provider and important caretaker of the environment,” said Tom Gores, founder and CEO of Platinum Equity. “It is a leader in a sector that requires both operational excellence and ESG best practices. It is tailor-made for Platinum’s hands-on approach, and we’re excited about the opportunity.”
In addition to its core services, Urbaser has made substantial investments in R&D with a focus on circular economy solutions like bioplastics, bioproducts, compost, waste oil from vessels recovery, and advancements in innovative waste collection practices. The company’s commitment to innovation is a competitive advantage and fundamental to providing solutions for the sustainable development of urban services, integrated water management, and treatment of municipal and industrial waste. (More information is available in the company’s 2020 Sustainability Report.)
“The team at China Tianying have been excellent stewards of the business and we greatly appreciate their trust as a transaction partner and their confidence in our ability to build on their success and deliver a transaction that creates value for all stakeholders,” said Platinum Equity Partner Louis Samson, who oversees the firm’s European operations.
“Urbaser will be a strong addition to our growing portfolio of operating companies headquartered in Europe. We have a lot of momentum in Spain and in Europe generally, which is a result of the resources we have put on the ground there and our deliberate strategy to continue investing in the region. We have had a great deal of success in Europe and acquiring Urbaser represents another exciting step forward.”
Other current European Platinum Equity investments include: wine producer Fantini Group Vini (Ortona, Italy); private label sweet biscuits manufacturer Biscuit International (Paris); global marine contractor De Wave Group (Genoa, Italy); seafood provider Iberconsa (Vigo, Spain); and European vacation rentals group Awaze (London).
“We are pleased to have reached an agreement that delivers a strong return for our shareholders while ensuring Urbaser remains in good hands moving forward,” said China Tianying Chief Financial Officer Fengwei Guo. “We are confident Platinum Equity has the resources and expertise to pursue an exciting new phase of growth, expansion and investment.”
Upon closing, José María López Piñol will continue to lead Urbaser as Chief Executive Officer.
“Platinum’s global operating capabilities, financial resources and commitment to supporting our business make it the ideal partner,” said Mr. López Piñol. “We will be able to accelerate our geographic expansion, maintain a healthy balance sheet and continue investing in sustainability.”
“Urbaser is a highly scalable platform with an attractive value proposition across the entire spectrum of waste management services,” said Platinum Equity Managing Director Igor Chacartegui. “The environmental services sector is in a period of growth and consolidation, and we will leverage the company’s scale and technical capabilities to accelerate its expansion both organically and through targeted M&A investments in key geographies.”
Citi and Santander are serving as investment advisors to Platinum Equity on the acquisition of Urbaser. Latham and Watkins is serving as the firm’s legal counsel.
About Platinum Equity
Founded in 1995 by Tom Gores, Platinum Equity is a global investment firm with more than $25 billion of assets under management and a portfolio of approximately 40 operating companies that serve customers around the world. The firm is currently investing from Platinum Equity Capital Partners V, a $10 billion global buyout fund, and Platinum Equity Small Cap Fund, a $1.5 billion buyout fund focused on investment opportunities in the lower middle market. Platinum Equity specializes in mergers, acquisitions and operations – a trademarked strategy it calls M&A&O® – acquiring and operating companies in a broad range of business markets, including manufacturing, distribution, transportation and logistics, equipment rental, metals services, media and entertainment, technology, telecommunications and other industries. Over the past 25 years Platinum Equity has completed more than 300 acquisitions.