Amsterdam October 8, 1999 - EQT Scandinavia B.V. ("EQT"), the investment manager of the EQT Scandinavia II private equity fund, has successfully finalized its negotiations with Nestlé regarding the purchase of the Findus brand worldwide, with the exclusion of Switzerland and Italy, and parts of Nestlé's frozen food business in Europe. The agreement is subject to regulatory approval and to consultation procedures with the work force in some countries.
Findus is a leading international frozen food brand, which has its origins in the Nordic region. The acquired business encompasses Nestlé's full line of frozen food activities in the Nordic region and the UK, including prepared meals, pizzas, recipe dishes, crêpes, vegetables and fish. The transaction also includes parts of Nestlé's frozen food activities in France, Spain, Belgium, Holland and Portugal - mainly vegetables, potatoes and mixes thereof as well as seafood, raw fish and coated fish, including fish fingers under the Croustibat brand. Total 1998 sales amounted to proximately SEK 5 billion and the business that will be acquired employs approximately 3,500 full time employees.
Claes Dahlbäck, Chairman of EQT, states in connection with reaching the agreement: "The acquisition of Findus is an important step for EQT. The business has considerable development potential and we intend to invest in and develop the Findus brand and the acquired frozen food business both organically and through add on acquisitions in the Nordic region and throughout Europe."
Harald Einsmann, former Head of Procter & Gamble Europe and Middle East and advisor to EQT, will be appointed Chairman of the Board of Directors of Findus.
EQT is a group of private equity funds with equity commitments totalling SEK 11 billion. Since its inception in 1994 EQT has successfully concluded investments in 17 companies. EQT Partners AB, acting as investment advisor to all EQT funds, has offices in Stockholm, Sweden, Copenhagen, Denmark and Helsinki, Finland. EQT realises its business concept by acquiring medium sized companies in the Northern Europe and serving as an active owner in close co-operation with the management of the companies acquired.
For further information please contact:
Mr. Claes Dahlbäck
Chairman of EQT Scandinavia B.V., Amsterdam
Tel. +31-6-51 50 45 85
Mr. Håkan Johansson
Senior Partner EQT Partners AB, Stockholm
Tel. +46-8-440 5300