Brussels, 27 January 2016 – Ergon Capital Partners III SA (« Ergon ») announced that it has reached an agreement with private equity fund H.I.G. Capital (« HIG ») and management for the acquisition of Looping Group (« Looping » or the « Group »). Laurent Bruloy, Looping’s CEO, and the management team will reinvest alongside Ergon in the context of this operation which is expected to close in March 2016.
Looping was created in 2011 following the acquisition of 7 amusement parks from Compagnie des Alpes. Since then, the Group has acquired 4 additional parks in France and Spain.
With approximately €60 million of annual sales, Looping is one of the leading operators of regional amusement parks in Europe with 11 parks including 7 in France (Planète Sauvage, Mer de Sable, Bagatelle, Mini Châteaux, Grand Aquarium de Touraine, Cobac Parc and Grand Aquarium de Saint-Malo) and 4 in other European countries (Aquaparc du Bouveret in Switzerland, Hellendoorn in the Netherlands, Pleasurewood Hills in the UK and Isla Magica in Spain).
Commenting on the acquisition, Laurent Bruloy said: « We are delighted to work alongside Ergon to further implement our pan-European growth strategy and are convinced that the strong buy- and-build culture of Ergon will allow us to accelerate our development. We thank HIG for their help and support over the past years. »
Wolfgang de Limburg, Managing Partner of Ergon added: « We are pleased to have the opportunity to partner with Laurent and his team in this new phase of development for Looping. Looping is Ergon’s second investment in France and we are determined to provide its management team with the necessary support to accelerate its growth and its expansion plan in Europe ».
Nicolas Teboul, Managing Director at Ergon Capital Advisors France, concluded: « Looping is today a key player in the European market of regional parks and benefits from promising growth prospects in this attractive sector. »
Created in 2011 following the acquisition of 7 amusement parks from Compagnie des Alpes and further expanded by 4 subsequent build-ups, Looping is a leading operator of amusement parks in Europe. The Group consists today of 11 parks located in France, Switzerland, Netherlands, UK and Spain, and recorded approximately €60 million of sales in 2015.
For more information on Looping, please visit www.looping-group.com.
Ergon Capital Partners is a mid-market private equity investment company backed by Groupe Bruxelles Lambert (“GBL”), through its fully-owned subsidiary Sienna Capital. Through 3 consecutive investment funds (Ergon Capital Partners and Ergon Capital Partners II and III), Ergon manages ~€500 million of capital. Ergon is a disciplined and discreet value investor, which provides “patient and friendly capital” to entrepreneurs and managers, who need capital and industrial solutions to accelerate the development of their companies. Ergon makes equity investments from €20 million up to €70 million in leading companies with a sustainable competitive position in attractive niche markets located in the Benelux, France, Italy, Iberia, Germany and Switzerland. Ergon is advised by Ergon Capital Advisors which has offices in Brussels, Paris, Milan, Madrid and Munich.
Since inception in 2005, Ergon invested in 15 companies (of which 7 in Italy, 4 in the Benelux, 2 in France, 1 in Spain and 1 in Germany) and has completed 19 add-on acquisitions for a total aggregate transaction value of €3 billion. Including Looping, Ergon’s current portfolio consists of 9 companies in various sectors encompassing luxury, specialty retail, industrial, manufacturing, healthcare, publishing and leisure.
For more information on Ergon please visit www.ergoncapital.com.