Bridgepoint stays cool with €585m refrigerator deal

The investment in AHT Cooling is Bridgepoint’s first deal after securing a 12-month fund extension for its current €4.8bn Bridgepoint Europe IV last month.

Bridgepoint will acquire AHT Cooling, an Austrian manufacturer of commercial plug-in refrigeration equipment, from Partners Group and Quadriga Capital for €585 million. 

Partners Group, which co-invested in the business alongside Quadriga Capital in January 2007, said in a statement it expects to generate a 25 percent internal rate of return on the investment. The transaction is expected to be completed next month. 

Under the ownership of Quadriga and Partners, AHT Cooling more than doubled its annual revenues to over €300 million. In the same period it increased its workforce to over 1100 from 650, according to the statement.   

Bridgepoint aims to further internationalise the business, it said in a separate statement. It is understood that following the acquisition, Bridgepoint’s €4.84 billion Bridgepoint Europe IV fund will be more than 80 percent deployed. 

The deal marks Bridgepoint’s first investment after securing a 12-month fund extension from investors last month. The firm sought the fund extension after it became apparent it would not need to fund as many add-on acquisitions as initially planned, PEI reported in June.  

Fund IV, a 2008-vintage, has a portfolio of 19 companies, which have made 54 add-on acquisitions totalling €750 million. Because only four add-ons required equity – some €130 million – Bridgepoint decided to increase the proportion of the fund allocated to primary investments to between 90 percent  and 95 percent, instead of the originally planned 85 percent. After securing the extension, it is understood Bridgepoint planned to make an additional four to five primary investments from this vehicle.