Allianz sells vending machine operator Selecta

KKR, a leading global investment firm, has signed a definitive agreement with Allianz Capital Partners (ACP) to acquire their majority stake in Selecta Group. The transaction is subject to, among other things, the consent of Selecta’s bondholders.

Selecta is a leader in the European vending and coffee services market and geographically diversified across Europe with operations in 21 countries and a special focus on Switzerland, Sweden and France. The company operates more than 145,000 vending machines, employs approximately 4,500 people, and serves more than 6 million consumers daily. KKR has supported Selecta since 2014, when KKR Credit provided €220 million in long-term financing as part of the Group’s overall refinancing.

Remo Brunschwiler, CEO of Selecta, said: “We are looking forward to reinforcing our trusted partnership with KKR, an experienced and reliable long-term investor who will help us further grow our business. Together, we have the strength to create additional value for our stakeholders. We would like to thank ACP for their support over the past eight years. ACP has actively accompanied the development of our business and laid the foundation for a successful future.”

Mark Brown, director special situations at KKR Credit in London, said: “We have been working with Selecta since 2014 from a creditor and minority shareholder perspective and are now excited to take our partnership to the next level. With our operational experience and industry know-how as well as our extensive network of senior advisors, we will support Selecta in actively driving the company’s growth strategy whilst focusing on operational and capital efficiency. Selecta is in an excellent position to benefit from the current industry dynamics such as an improving European macroeconomic environment, the outsourcing of coffee services at the workplace, and the availability of new technologies including cashless payment and telemetry.”

Joerg Spanier, managing director at Allianz Capital Partners, said: “Over the past eight years, Selecta has been able to maintain and strengthen its market position despite a difficult overall vending market in recent years. The successful refinancing last year was a major milestone for Selecta to drive the identified growth initiatives. Today the business is well-positioned to maximise its potential and continue its growth strategy.”

KKR has substantial experience in investing in European companies and in bringing the businesses to the next stage of development. Since 1996, KKR has invested in more than 100 companies across industrial sectors in Europe, representing approximately $25 billion in invested long-term capital. It also has significant expertise in the European consumer and retail sector in general and in the vending and coffee services industry in particular. Current investments in this field include Germany-based WMF, a manufacturer of coffee machines and kitchenware, and Gruppo Argenta, Italy’s second largest vending and coffee services company, which received approximately €100 million in long-term financing from KKR Credit in 2014.

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