Industri Kapital still keen on Perstorp

Gaining control of Perstorp would be a significant development in the Nordic private equity group’s plan to build a European specialist chemicals producer.

Nordic private equity firm Industri Kapital has resubmitted a bid for Perstorp AB, the Swedish chemicals company. The bid is worth about SKr6.4bn (E689m), the Financial Times reports. This is considerably lower than the private equity firm’s first attempt to take over the specialist chemicals company last year, when it offered about SKr9.3bn. That offer was withdrawn in September following an earnings warning by Perstorp.

One of the preconditions for the offer is the spin-off of Pergo, Perstorp's laminate flooring operation, to Perstorp shareholders. Shareholders controlling about 75 per cent of votes in Perstorp have already accepted the offer.

Commenting on the offer, Urban Jansson, chairman of the Perstorp board, said: “The board will now evaluate the current offer and its component parts on the basis of the support it has already received from major shareholders and while taking other strategic alternatives into account.”

Perstorp is an important part of Industri Kapital's plans to build one of Europe's leading specialist chemicals producers. It has already acquired similar operations in Finland and Norway, and the plan is to seek a listing for the chemical operations in three to four years.

The takeover could face difficulties with European Union competition authorities if it goes ahead. A four-month investigation was conducted into the initial takeover attempt, amid concerns that the new company would have too strong a position in industrial resins.

In January this year, Industri Kapital closed its Industri Kapital 2000 fund, one of the largest buy-out funds raised in Europe, at E2.1bn.