CVC buys Nordic optician

The London-based firm has agreed to buy Synsam Nordic from Swedish investment group Alipes.

CVC Capital Partners has agreed to buy Synsam Nordic, an optician chain in the Nordic region, from Alipes, a Swedish investment firm owned by IKEA Investments, and former store owners, according to a statement.

Financial details of the transaction, which is subject to competition clearances, were undisclosed. CVC declined to comment beyond the statement.

Synsam was set up in 1968 when independent opticians in Sweden joined forces under a common brand name. Synsam is now the largest optical retail chain in the Nordic region with more than 420 own stores and franchisees in Sweden, Denmark and Norway, according to a statement. It sells spectacles, contact lenses, sunglasses, accessories and offers eye examinations. In 2013, Synsam reported revenues of approximately SEK 3 billion (€340 million, $470 million) and had a workforce of approximately 2,600.

It’s unclear which fund CVC used for the transaction. Last July, CVC reached its €10.5 billion hard-cap for its latest fund after turning away some €3.5 billion of additional capital, PEI reported at the time.

Last month, CVC was still investing its CVC European Equity Partners V, a €10.75 billion fund it closed in 2008. It used this vehicle to acquire AVAST, a US-based security software company, in a deal that valued the company at $1 billion.

It also used this fund for two deals it completed in the latter half of 2013: the simple meals business of NYSE-listed Campbell Soup Company, which it bought for €400 million in October, and warranty specialist Domestic & General, which it bought for £800 million from Advent International in August.

Fund V’s performance was valued at a 1.2x multiple and a 9.6 percent internal rate of return as of 30 June 2013, according to data from the California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS).