EQT makes Danish investment

Swedish private equity firm EQT has bought a majority stake in Danish industrial engineering group Cimbria from the company’s founders. The country has become an attractive destination for private equity capital.

Nordic buyout firm EQT has agreed to buy Cimbria, an industrial engineering business, from its Danish founders.

Terms were not disclosed, but the business generated DKK 1,250 million (€168 million, $226 million) of sales in 2006 and employs 900 people in 20 countries. The founders, Sven Toftdahl Olesen and Ole Toftdahl Olesen, will retain “significant” stakes.

Cimbria makes machinery and turnkey plants in four business areas – grain and seed processing, bulk waste handling, vegetable oil extraction and industrial ventilation.

The deal is the fourth investment from EQT’s Opportunity Fund, which closed last year on €372 million. EQT’s other Danish investments include Bodilsen, a furniture manufacturer that the firm bought in November 2006, and Dako, a cancer diagnostics business that EQT bought in February 2007 for €980 million.

Denmark has become a more popular destination for private equity capital. European buyout firm CVC Capital Partners has bought Danish health and beauty chain Matas while consumer-focused buyout firm Langholm Capital recently bought Sika-Horsnaes and Cane-Line, two Danish furniture makers.

Founded in 1994, EQT manages €10.5 billion in ten different types of funds and has offices in northern Europe and Hong Kong. EQT’s partners recently bought out a 36 percent stake in its management company for €31.2 million from Investor, the investment vehicle of Sweden’s Wallenberg family and the biggest investor in EQT’s funds.