CVC sells glass business for €1.16bn

Owens-Illinois, the KKR-backed glassware provider for Budweiser beer, has acquired BSN Glasspack, a France-based manufacturer of glass containers in one of the largest European disposals of the year.

CVC Capital Partners, the pan-European private equity firm, has sold glass manufacturer BSN Glasspack for €1.16 billion ($1.41 billion) to New York-listed glass packaging firm Owens-Illinois, which is owned by global buyout firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts.

BSN was formed through the merger of the glass manufacturing business of global food and water manufacturer Groupe Danone with German-based packaging specialist Gerresheimer.

CVC originally acquired a 56 percent stake in the company in August 1999 and bought the remaining 44 percent from Groupe Danone last year. CVC's acquisition price was not disclosed. Owens-Illinois is acquiring all of BSN’s assets and is assuming reported debt of €685 million ($835 million).

The transaction received clearance from the EU competition authorities on the proviso that Owens-Illinois divests two glass bottle plants in Spain and Italy. One of Owens-Illinois’ largest customers is brewing company Anheuser-Busch, which manufactures Budweiser beer.

Paris-headquartered BSN reported net sales of approximately €1.23 billion last year. The company employs 6,400 people in 19 plants in France, Germany, the Netherlands and Spain.

CVC received £267 million (€400 million; $487 million) earlier this month from the IPO of Halfords, the UK car parts and bicycle retailer.

The IPO was CVC’s fourth exit this year and followed the $340 million sale of UK high voltage components manufacturer Trench Electric Holdings to Germany’s Siemens in April. CVC closed its most recent fund at $4 billion in 2001, and is expected to commence a new fundraising later this year or next year.