Paris – Tuesday, 6th March, 2018 – The European private equity group Argos Wityu announces the acquisition of Zodiac Milpro from funds managed by Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. (“Oaktree”). All needed governmental approvals have been obtained. Terms of the transaction are not disclosed.
Headquartered in Paris, and established in Australia, Canada, Italy, UK, USA, Singapore and Spain, Zodiac Milpro is a global and unrivalled market leader in the design and manufacture of very technical rigid-inflatable boats and inflatables for professionals with very high requirements (firemen, sea rescue, coast guards, drug enforcement, special forces, etc).
Positioned in the high-end segment of the market, Zodiac Milpro and Zodiac Hurricane boats are the most recognized worldwide thanks to the longstanding commitment of the group to technological leadership and manufacturing excellence.
With its 330 highly skilled employees and its multi-site and flexible industrial footprint in key geographic markets, the company has close proximity with a large customer base over the 6 continents. Its footprint is reinforced by a strong commercial presence including agents and distributors across the world. It is positioned on a global market which growth is set to accelerate over the next years, notably driven by the needs of governments to better protect their populations against disasters, crime and violent threats.
Louis Godron, partner at Argos Wityu, said: ” Zodiac Milpro and Zodiac Hurricane are iconic brands that have built an outstanding reputation for developing the best products worldwide. The company has strong assets: a market leadership position in a niche market with high entry barriers, a technological leadership, a robust and resilient balanced revenue mix, a diversified customer base, flexible operations, and a committed and qualified team. We look forward to partnering with the management team to continue to grow Zodiac Milpro’s activities organically, namely in Asia and Middle East, to reinforce and further expand the products range, and to bring additional services to customers. We at Argos Wityu also are committed to fund a resolute external growth policy. ”
Marc Lavorata, CEO, Zodiac Milpro, said, ” During our 4-year partnership with Oaktree, we have built a strong basis as we became a fully independent company able to reinforce our brands, sales and marketing activities, to expand geographically, and to implement operational improvement initiatives. These significant steps pave the way for our ongoing development which will carry on with Argos Wityu. We are delighted to continue to develop our business with a new partner sharing our vison that the company’ strength is based on the excellence of its products and services. ”
Baptiste Vaissié, Managing director at Oaktree said, “Under Oaktree’s ownership, Milpro has been carved-out from its previous owner Zodiac-Marine, while strengthening leading positions in its markets. Additionally the company has broadened its product offering to customers and extended its geographical presence, most notably in Asia. Milpro is now in position for the next stage of its development under the leadership of its management team with the support of Argos.”
Equity capital for the transaction comes from Argos Wityu’s fund VII, and the unitranche financing is provided by Idinvest Partners.
About Zodiac Milpro
Zodiac Milpro is the global leader for military and professional rigid inflatable boat and inflatables. The company is headquartered in Paris and has production and commercial entities in Europe, North America and Asia. Former branch of Zodiac Group, Zodiac Milpro has been acquired by Oaktree Capital Management in 2013 and thus became an independent company. It generates a turnover of 56 million € from April 2016 to March 2017, with a strong presence on all areas.