Bridgepoint wins Caffaro in auction

The European private equity group is the successful backer of the E120m management buyout at the Italian packaging firm.

Bridgepoint Capital has pipped rival European private equity firms, including Permira and GE Capital, in the race to acquire Italian flexible packaging firm Caffaro.

Bridgepoint is leading a E120m management buyout of the firm from Italian industrial group SNIA. Caffaro had a turnover of E90m last year and EBITDA of E16m. It has 269 employees.

According to Guido Belli, managing director of Bridgepoint’s office in Milan, the European flexible packaging markets is large and growing, particularly CFP’s market. “Latest available figures show that the European flexible packaging market is worth almost E6bn a year and CFP is achieving double-digit sales growth within that market,” he said.

The company, which will be re-named CFP Flexible Packaging on completion, will retain its current management team, headed by Maurizio de Costanzo who joined CFP in 1999.

The acquisition is the fourth investment made by Bridgepoint Capital’s Second European Private Equity Fund that closed earlier this year at over E2bn. The fund’s investments to date comprise the E206m buyout and de-listing of WT Foods, a UK manufacturer and distributor of ethnic and speciality foods; the E176m deal to acquire a 55 per cent stake in Virgin Active, the health and fitness business and the E67m buyout of the UK specialist hire company Hydrex Group.

Bridgepoint is currently putting the finishing touches to a 175p per share offer for top end UK health and fitness club operator Holmes Place. This deal values the company in excess of £175m.

Interbanca conducted the auction for Caffaro on behalf of SNIA Group. Acquisition finance was arranged and underwritten by BNP Paribas. Due diligence was performed by Bain & Co (market) and KPMG (financial).