Ratos acquires Speed Group
The purchase price (enterprise value) for 100% of the company amounts to approximately SEK 450m, of which Ratos will provide equity of about SEK 300m.
Speed Group is a supplier of logistics services that extend from staffing to full-scale warehouse management and certain supplementary services in production, recruitment and education. The Group currently has about 900 employees with operations located in south-west Sweden and its head office in Borås. The company was established in 2004 and is currently owned by its founders Jarl Ternander and Daniel Johansson as well as Jesper Andersson and CEO Catrin Wirfalk who, together with their employees, have successfully developed the business into one of Sweden's leading companies in its market segment. The current owners will remain at the company with an ownership share of approximately 30% and will maintain an active role in the company's development.
Demand for efficient logistics services is steadily increasing in pace with the growth in e-commerce, escalating outsourcing, the centralisation of warehouses in strategic locations and the rising complexity of logistics systems. This, combined with an expanding staffing market that requires flexible solutions consisting of specialised and skilled personnel, provides Speed Group with a strong position in an attractive market niche. Over the past five years, Speed Group has posted average organic growth of approximately 30% per annum with good profitability, and has been named a gazelle company by the Swedish business daily DI for the past two years. In 2014, sales totalled SEK 412m with an operating profit (EBITA) of SEK 54m.
Ratos's CEO, Susanna Campbell, commented, "Speed Group is a fast growing, profitable company with an exciting business model through which the combination of logistics services and specialist staffing operations enables a competitive offering based on the changing needs of customers. This offers good opportunities for a continued positive development. Through combining the industry expertise of the founders with our background of supporting companies in growth phases and developing organisations in a market segment with underlying structural growth, we are able to recognise substantial opportunities for the company, thus making it an exciting investment opportunity for Ratos."
Speed Group's CEO, Catrin Wirfalk, said, "We are delighted to have found a strong Swedish partner in Ratos with its 150-year industrial background. Together with Speed Group's founders, I am convinced that the choice of Ratos will bring networks, expertise and a long-term approach to our business that are consistent with our fundamental values. Together, we are strengthening our capabilities for continued growth and our objective of meeting our customers' growing needs for flexible and efficient solutions."
Ratos is acquiring approximately 70% of Speed Group. The purchase price (enterprise value) for 100% amounts to approximately SEK 450m. Based on estimated net debt on completion of the deal, Ratos is expected to provide equity of approximately SEK 300m. The size of Ratos's investment will be affected by cash flow until completion of the acquisition. The acquisition is subject to approval by the relevant authorities and is expected to be completed in the third quarter.