CVC, PAI close Provimi deal

PAI Management has teamed up with CVC Capital Partners to take a controlling stake in French animal feeds maker Provimi.

PAI Management has completed its first deal following the final close of its E1.8bn PAI Europe III. The firm has teamed up with UK-based CVC Capital Partners to acquire a controlling majority stake in Edison subsidiary Provimi for E203m.

Provimi, a French-based manufacturer of animal feeds, is being sold as part of the Italian energy firm Edison’s strategy to sell its non-energy interests. The CVC-PAI consortium will pay E203m in cash for a 53.66 per cent stake, following which they will launch a tender offer for the remaining 42 per cent stake.

The offer will be made at E14.5 per share, equivalent to the amount being paid for the majority stake in Provimi. This is at a 27 per cent discount to the current Provimi share price of E19.82. CVC and PAI plan to retain the Euronext listing.  

Full financial details of the transaction are yet to be disclosed, including the size of the stake each firm will acquire. The firms have confirmed that new bank financing has been arranged for the acquisition.

Provimi, which employs 6,000 people, reported revenues of E1.5bn in 2001. In the first quarter of 2001, the firm achieved operating profits of E22.7m and had net debt of E496m.

CVC has been one of the most active European firms in the past year since closing its E4.65bn European buyout fund. Late last year, the firm acquired Aventis’ nutritional feed additives division for an undisclosed sum. Recent deals include the acquisition of UK retailer Halfords for £427m and the acquisition of Iberdrola’s high-voltage electricity transmission assets for £577m.