Capvis acquires the majority in Felss Group

Königsbach-Stein (Germany) and Baar (Switzerland), 18 January 2017 – Capvis will become the new majority owner of Felss Group, a global technology leader in cold forming of hollow parts. Capvis Equity IV LP Fund, which is advised by Swiss based Capvis Equity Partners AG (together "Capvis"), will acquire the shares from the previous sole shareholder Christine Kienhöfer, who will retain a substantial shareholding in the company.

Founded in 1905, the family business Felss has over 600 employees across six production sites in Europe, Asia and the US. Its customers include numerous international blue-chip automotive suppliers and car manufacturers. "We sell sophisticated production systems and manufacture particularly lightweight yet extremely rigid hollow components tailored to the specific requirements of our customers", explains Andreas Egelseder, Chief Market & Technology Officer at Felss. "This comprehensive offering gives our customers maximum flexibility in their global sourcing decisions and enabled us to significantly increase our revenues over the past years. We will further accelerate this development together with Capvis as the new strong partner at our side."

Felss Group succeeded in almost tripling its revenues since 2000 to approximately EUR 125 million and also consistently improving profitability. "We are impressed by the internationally leading position Felss Group has attained in the attractive cold forming niche market," says Daniel Flaig, managing partner at Capvis. "The group has a convincing strategy in place and we will do our utmost to support the existing management’s game plan for continued growth." The private equity house Capvis acquires majority stakes in well positioned medium-sized companies across Europe, inter alia offering responsible solutions in succession situations. "This implies much more than just capital investments," explains Daniel Flaig. "We bring specialist expertise and a lot of personal commitment to the table and place particular emphasis on further developing great businesses with sustainable value-add in mind."

"Over the coming years, we want to make our future-oriented technologies and our know how even more indispensable to our customers – through both, our machinery engineering and component production," says Rainer Schiessle, Chief Operating Officer of Felss. "And further internationalisation will continue to play a pivotal role. In Asia and North America alone, we could increase annual revenues in the tens of millions – just in the automotive industry. We will also look to exploit additional potential in sectors such as electrical or medical engineering, areas in which Capvis can make a valuable contribution."

Christine Kienhöfer, the previous shareholder and Chairwoman of the Board of Felss Group, says: "My priority was to find a buyer that shares both the philosophy that is underpinned by the combined strength of our machinery and component manufacturing businesses and our strong values. In large part, our products, structures and processes are so successful because they are supported by an unequivocal corporate culture." Mark Schwegler, Chief Financial Officer of Felss Group, adds: "During our discussions, we quickly realised that Capvis clearly understood how much more there is to Felss beyond the technology and how much this other dimension will contribute to our future success."

Christine Kienhöfer continues: "The partnership with Capvis will preserve our strengths and our identity while helping us to facilitate the profound change that is happening in our end markets and optimally exploit the opportunities it creates. I look forward to further assisting the company on its path in my future role as minority shareholder and member of the advisory board."

The parties agreed not to disclose the financial details of the transaction. The completion of the transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals.

About Felss Gruppe

Headquartered in Königsbach-Stein, Felss Group manufactures metal processing machines and components for diverse sectors such as the automotive industry under the brand Felss Shortcut Technologies. The cold forming processes rotary swaging, axial forming, bending, autofrettage and tube end forming are central to the technology. In 2016, the Group generated revenues of approximately EUR 125 million with more than 600 employees in 4 countries.

About Capvis

Capvis is the leading private equity firm based in Switzerland. It invests in German-speaking Europe and in Northern Italy. With a current fund volume of EUR 720 million, Capvis focuses on majority holdings in leading mid-sized companies. It aims to support management teams in unleashing entrepreneurial potential and achieving new levels of excellence. Since 1990 Capvis has completed 50 transactions with a total volume of more than EUR 5 billion. Capvis has floated ten companies on stock exchanges and has repeatedly been voted Switzerland's, and also Germany's, best private equity firm by the international financial press.Felss Group media relations contact:

Felss Group media relations contact:
Andreas Egelseder
+49 7232 402 178

Capvis media relations contact:  
Julie Darbellay
Head Investor Relations
+41 43 300 58 38

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