Charterhouse becomes Bartec’s third PE owner

Charterhouse reportedly fought off competition from rivals CD&R and EQT, as well as trade player Honeywell International, to acquire the German safety equipment maker in a tertiary buyout.

Swiss investment managers Partners Group and Capvis Equity Partners have sold safety equipment manufacturer Bartec to Charterhouse Capital Partners in a deal understood to be worth in the region of €600 million.

The German business, founded in 1975, manufactures industrial safety equipment for use in hazardous areas which are exposed to the risk of explosions. It has production sites in Germany, Switzerland, Slovenia and China.

Capvis, together with Partners Group, acquired the company from Allianz Capital Partners in 2008 in a deal valued at about €325 million. Partners Group declined to comment on the return achieved following the exit, while Capvis could not be reached for comment by press time.

However, the estimated sale price is broadly double what the pair paid for the company in 2008. Assuming modest leverage of about 50 percent of the 2008 acquisition price, the return multiple generated by this exit is likely to have been in excess of 3x.

Walter Keller, chairman of Partners Group’s direct private equity investment committee, said in a statement: “Over the last years, we leveraged our global network to help develop new client relationships and identify suitable acquisition targets. Our extensive industry experience supported the set-up of a new sales organization in China and to strengthen the firm’s positioning in the fast growing region of the Middle East.”

Commerzbank and William Blair & Co ran the sale process for Capvis and Partners Group