Direct Investments

NORD Holding acquires Rhodius, worldwide leading wire mesh manufacturer

15.02.2006

In a management buy-out involving the management of the company and the Bavarian Beteiligungsgesellschaft, NORD Holding Unternehmensbeteiligungsgesellschaft, Hanover, has acquired Rhodius GmbH domiciled in Weissenburg (Bavaria), Laage (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania) and Tapolca (Hungary).

The company was founded in 1925 by Max Rhodius. Previously Rhodius developed pan cleaners out of wire mesh that are still sold today. Since the 70s Rhodius has increasingly focussed on applications for the automotive sector and achieved turnover of more than € 30 mil. in the previous year. The acquisition will ensure the continued long term existence of the company headquarters in Weissenburg with more than 100 employees.

The company has been sold by the Bürger Group in Hildesheim that, in addition to its construction and retail activities, also plays an active role as an automotive supplier. In future Bürger AG intends to focus on its core competences in the automotive sector as a producer of fibre-based acoustic and thermal insulation products and has therefore decided to divest itself of its none-core activities.

Over the past few years Rhodius has acquired a leading position in the niche market for wire mesh for all applications in the automotive industry (e.g. for airbags or catalysts), as well as for environmental and process engineering. By stepping up its research and development activities over the next few years Rhodius intends to tap into above average market growth and above all to develop new market opportunities for wire mesh.

The current consolidation trend in the German market presents the company with an opportunity to grow through targeted acquisitions. Rhodius' customer base includes large automotive suppliers and leading environmental and process engineering companies.

About NORD Holding

With its 50-year history and over € 2.0 billion assets under management, NORD Holding is one of the leading private equity asset managers in Germany with a focus on direct and fund investments.

The fund investments division targets the small- and mid-cap segment of the European private equity market through primaries, secondaries and co-investments.

NORD Holding has a strong focus on emerging buyout managers, hands-on investment strategies and regularly acts as an anchor investor. The division manages € 1.3 billion and ranks among the top decile fund investment groups in Europe.

The direct investments division of NORD Holding focuses on structuring and financing company succession models, acquiring parts of larger groups/subsidiaries as well as on expansion financing of medium-sized companies. In contrast to most other financial investors, who only manage closed-end funds, NORD Holding acts as a so-called "evergreen fund", thereby investing from its own balance sheet with no maturity restrictions. Currently, the fund has interests in more than 15 companies in the DACH region.

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Christiane Lukas
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30177 Hannover

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