Spell of Japan activity continues for CITIC

The firm has sold its investment in Narumi Corporation, its fourth exit from the Japan market

CITIC Capital Partners has exited its investment in Narumi Corporation to strategic investor Ishizuka Glass as it maintains a high level of activity in the Japanese market.

The deal was made from its first Japan buyout fund and is the firm’s fourth exit in Japan, according to a statement. The buyer, Ishizuka Glass, will pay JPY 4.3 billion ($37 million; €29 million) all in equity for the business.

CITIC’s Japan funds focus on supporting Japanese medium-size companies in their efforts at international expansion, particularly into China.

Since its initial investment in 2006, CITIC has helped Narumi strengthen its brand and global manufacturing capabilities, as well as successfully introducing Narumi products to the China market, where it is now recognised as a leading tableware brand with a growing sales base, according to the firm.

“By connecting the strength of Narumi’s brand, sales network, customer base, and other managerial resources, we have been able to work with Narumi to grow its business. We expect the growth to continue with their new ownership structure as Narumi and Ishizuka Glass have tremendous synergies in their businesses and company values,” Hironobu Nakano, head of CITIC Japan, said in a statement.

CITIC declined to provide return information on the deal, however has had other success in Japan recently.

In November, CITIC sold its investment in Higashiyama Film Co, of which it owned a 96 percent stake, to strategic buyer Otsuka Chemical, Private Equity International reported earlier. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed, but one source close to the deal said CITIC gained between a 4 and 5 times return on its investment, having invested JPY 3 billion in two tranches during 2010 and 2011.

The firm also maintains an active pipeline in Japan, earlier in December launching a tender offer to acquire 71.6 percent of Schott Moritex Corporation, in a deal worth JPY 1.8 billion. The investment will be made from its second Japan buyout fund.