AAC consolidates sauna market

The former ABN AMRO buyout firm has combined two Nordic sauna manufacturers to create what it says is the largest sauna company in the world. The new owners are looking East, to burgeoning demand in the Russian market, to drive the company forward.

AAC Capital Partners, the former captive buyout arm of ABN AMRO, has acquired Tylö Group, a manufacturer of saunas, from its Swedish family owners for an undisclosed sum.

Helo Group:
steaming ahead

Tylö will be merged with AAC portfolio company Helo Group, formerly known as Saunatec, a Finnish operator which has been under AAC’s ownership since 2006. In January 2008 Helo acquired a smaller operator, Lumilaude.

The combined entity will have an annual turnover of around €86 million ($128 million).

Johan Bjurström, managing partner at AAC’s Stockholm office, cited international growth as a future driver for the business.

“We are particularly excited by the Russian market, which is growing by 10 to 15 percent per year,” he said in a statement.

Last week AAC revealed a total commitment of €1 billion for a new buyout fund from The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and Goldman Sachs.

AAC was formerly known as ABN AMRO Capital and spun out of the Dutch bank in September 2007 following the bank’s takeover by a consortium led by RBS.