JP Morgan Partners sells SWS stake to Stirling

London-based Stirling Square Capital has led a E145m recapitalisation of the Dutch plastic packaging business in a deal that sees JP Morgan Partners and the company’s controlling family reduce their stake in the business.

UK-based private equity firm Stirling Square Capital Partners, in a E145m leveraged recapitalisation, has taken control of Netherlands-based Schoeller Wavin Systems (SWS), a manufacturer of plastic crates and pallets.


SWS has a turnover of E200m and has 13 production facilities in Europe and the United States. The company was formed from the merger of Schoeller Plast Group and the Dutch Wavin Trepak Group in 1999. The company’s client base includes Heineken, Beck's, Coca Cola, Pepsi Cola, Deutsche Post and Dupont.


The transaction sees the controlling Schoeller family reduce their stake in the business and provides an exit for JP Morgan Partners, a minority investor in the company. The Schoeller family sold a portion of their interest to inject further capital into the business.


As a result of the equity investment made by Stirling Square, SWS has agreed a new long-term debt package, partially utilised to refinance existing debt.  This was placed by Augusta Finance acting as advisor to Stirling Square, with NIB Capital Bank as underwriter and lead mandated arranger.


“Schoeller Wavin Systems has a very strong business model and leading market position and will benefit from the growth and consolidation of the European packaging industry,” Stefano Bonfiglio, a partner of Stirling Square, said. According to Jakob Förschner, also a partner of Stirling Square, the SVS transaction “is a good example of the investments we aim for, working with family owners in Europe to buy into companies with strong market positions and capable management teams.”


Stirling Square Capital Partners is a pan-European mid-market private equity firm with $250m of committed capital from Citigroup. Stirling Square Capital Partners provides private equity investment to European companies with enterprise values in the E50m to E500m range, operating across a broad range of sectors and industries.


Stirling is awaiting shareholder approval on its £40m offer for UK music publishing group Boosey & Hawkes. HgCapital is expected to launch a rival bid for the business within the next seven days.