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22.07.2008

EK Fin acquires a stake in Czech Papcel group

  • In the course of a management buyout, EK Mittelstandsfinanzierungs AG has acquired 34 per cent of the Czech mechanical engineering company Papcel a.s., Litovel
  • With an operating performance of around €30 million, the previously family-owned company is one of the most powerful providers of production facilities for the Eastern European speciality paper industry

In the course of a management buyout, EK Mittelstandsfinanzierungs AG – EK Fin for short –has acquired 34 per cent of the Czech mechanical engineering company Papcel a.s., Litovel. The long-time CEO of the group and son of the owning family, David Dostál, will take over the remaining shares. This transaction has allowed the company to be passed down from one generation to the next within the owning family and at the same time has ensured a maximum level of management continuity.

"By taking in a respected Austrian private equity investor, we expect to receive support in the further expansion of our customer base and in the opening up of new markets," explains CEO David Dostál.

"With the takeover of the Papcel group, we have added another powerful company to our portfolio. We are confident about the potential for development in Eastern and Southeastern Europe resulting from the steady increase in demand for paper products in these markets," say Klaus Haberzettl and Bernd Lechner, the directors of EK Fin, describing their fund's most recent deal.

Papcel a.s. (www.papcel.cz), a Czech public limited company with its domicile in Litovel, was founded in the year 1950 and was initially under complete public ownership. During the privatisation wave in the Czech Republic at the beginning of the 1990s, the company was fully acquired by the Dostál family in 1992.

Since the delivery of its first machines in 1953, the company has developed into one of the most powerful Eastern European companies in the speciality paper machinery industry. Papcel has delivered over seventy paper, cardboard and speciality-paper machines, for example, for the production of packaging paper, writing and printing paper, decor paper, tissue paper and filter paper since it was founded. In the last two years alone, it has modernised around thirty-five paper and pulp processing plants in Eastern Europe.

Since 2003, the company has had its own subsidiary in St. Petersburg, OOO Papcel SPb, which predominantly serves the Russian market as a distribution company and spare parts supplier. The company recently achieved an operating performance of about €30 million with roughly 270 employees.

EK Mittelstandsfinanzierungs AG
EK Fin is one of the leading Austrian private equity funds. Its assets under management amount to €50 million. The core shareholder is Bank Austria. EK Fin finances company expansions, acquisitions, management buyouts and buy-ins. Shares generally ranging from 10 to 49 per cent are acquired with investments of between €1.5 million and €7.0 million.

EK Fin receives support from BA-CA Private Equity GmbH. In concrete terms, BA-CA Private Equity GmbH is responsible for marketing and controlling and ensures that the company takes advantage of all the opportunities offered by UniCredit Group as a banking network. BA-CA Private Equity GmbH also supports Mezzanin Finanzierungs AG (www.mezz.at).

You can receive more information from:
Klaus Haberzettl, Chairman of the Managing Board
Bernd Lechner, Member of the Managing Board
EK Mittelstandsfinanzierungs AG
Tel: +43 (1) 532 89 79/11
www.ekfin.at