TA Associates to buy Surfaces Group

TA Associates has agreed to acquire Surfaces Group from Astorg.

TA Associates has agreed to acquire Surfaces Group from Astorg. No financial terms were disclosed. Based in Cenate Sotto, Italy, Surfaces Group is a provider of of abrasive tools and consumables used in the manufacturing process of high-end materials.


Astorg is pleased to announce that it has signed a binding agreement to sell Surfaces Group (“The Group” or “Surfaces”) to TA Associates. Headquartered in Cenate Sotto, Italy, Surfaces Group is the world leading supplier of abrasive tools and consumables used in the manufacturing process of high-end materials.

The Group’s products are used to smoothen, cut and polish high-end ceramic tiles, stone slabs, glass panes and metal objects. Surfaces’ primary industrial, commercial and R&D operations are spread across seven locations in Northern Italy. The company has also established subsidiaries in the United States, Spain, Portugal, Brazil, Turkey, Russia and India and employs more than 500 people globally.

Pierluigi Dinelli, CEO of Surfaces Group, said: “We would like to thank Astorg for their support over these past three years. The Astorg team has been an instrumental contributor to the organic growth, international expansion as well as the M&A strategy of the company. Under their stewardship we have done the right investments to consolidate Surfaces’ market leadership position and to continue to offer first class service and innovative technology to our customers. We welcome our new partner TA Associates, a leading growth investor, who shares our vision and ambition to continue our growth trajectory and with a long track-record of helping businesses expand into additional international and opportunistic markets.”

Lorenzo Zamboni, Partner at Astorg, said: “We are parting from a great company led by a great management team, and we are proud to have co-written a successful chapter of its history with them. We are sure that their passion, dedication and technical expertise will allow them to accomplish many more great things in the future, and we wish them all the best.”

Patrick Sader, Managing Director at TA Associates and Co-Head of TA Associates' EMEA Services Group, said: "Surfaces Group is a unique company with a high quality business model, a leading market position and what we believe are best-in-class products and customer services, with multiple potential levers of growth both organically and through acquisitions. We are thrilled to partner with Pierluigi and the management team to help the Company pursue its domestic and international expansion.”

The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2020 and is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals. Surfaces’ shareholders were advised by Houlihan Lokey, Rothschild, BonelliErede and EY, while the Group’s management team was advised by Pavia e Ansaldo. TA Associates was advised by Latham & Watkins, KPMG and EY-Parthenon.

About Surfaces Group
Surfaces Group generates total sales of over €100 million spread over 4 business divisions with 13 production plants and 7 branch offices, serving more than 1,800 clients in 80 countries.

The Group has been created through the acquisition of complementary companies. The path of Surfaces started in 1986 with the incorporation of a company specialised in the production of magnesium bonded abrasives for stone slabs. In 2001, the product offering was extended with a range of new resin bonded diamond products and the company approached the ceramic tile sector for the first time. In a very short time, the company gained recognition in the Sassuolo district of Italy at the very pinnacle of the world ceramic industry.

The M&A journey began in 2016, with the acquisitions of AS Tools in order to reinforce the product offering for ceramic customers; and ADI, one of the market leaders in the development of consumable abrasives for stone slabs, glass panes and ceramic tiles. 2017 saw the addition of RBM, which specialises in glass machining tools; and, in 2018, it was the addition of NoCoat, a company at the technological forefront of protective chemicals used for ceramic tiles, which is particularly complementary with the AS Tools offer. 2019 was another important year with the integration of International Chips, a company that produces tools for ceramic tiles and for the finishing and tumble polishing of metals; and of Luna Abrasivi, another Italian reference supplier to the ceramic industry.

About Astorg
Astorg is a leading independent private equity firm with over €8 billion of assets under management. Astorg seeks to partner with entrepreneurial management teams to acquire market leading global companies headquartered in Western Europe and North America, working together to create value through the provision of strategic guidance, experienced governance, and adequate capital. Astorg enjoys a distinct entrepreneurial culture, a long-term shareholder perspective, and a lean decision-making body enhancing its reactivity. Though not specialised, Astorg has gathered valuable industry expertise in software, healthcare, business-to-business professional services, and technology-based industrial companies. Astorg has offices in London, Paris, New York, Luxembourg, Frankfurt, and Milan. For further information about Astorg: www.astorg.com.

About TA Associates
TA Associates is a leading global growth private equity firm. Focused on targeted sectors within five industries– technology, healthcare, financial services, consumer and business services – TA invests in profitable, growing companies with opportunities for sustained growth, and has invested in more than 500 companies around the world. Investing as either a majority or minority investor, TA employs a long-term approach, utilizing its strategic resources to help management teams build lasting value in high quality growth companies. TA has raised $33.5 billion in capital since its founding in 1968 and is committing to new investments at the pace of over $2 billion per year. The firm’s more than 85 investment professionals are based in Boston, Menlo Park, London, Mumbai and Hong Kong. More info: www.ta.com.