Valco Group France, owned by the funds advised by Argos Wityu, acquires Guichon Valves and opens up its capital to FDEN (Fonds de Développements des Entreprises Nucléaires)
Valco Group France, recognised expert in the design, production and maintenance of high quality industrial valves through its proprietary brands (SNRI, VVS and Malbranque), announces the acquisition of Guichon Valves.
Guichon Valves specialises in the engineering, manufacture, assembly and testing of cutting-edge industrial valves (www.guichon.com). For more than 90 years, Guichon Valves has capitalised on the added value of its products, the technical expertise of its employees and the reputation of the Guichon Valves brand around the world.
Since its acquisition in February 2014 by the funds managed by Argos Wityu, Valco Group France has developed internationally through the opening of numerous subsidiaries and sales outlets. This merger with Guichon Valves is a highly strategic move, aiming at expanding the range of products and offering customers bespoke technology and services and addressing complementary markets (pharmaceuticals, fine chemicals and naval armaments).
“After 10 years of growth, we are looking for support from a major French industrial company in the sector to increase the commercial clout of Guichon Valves and reinforce its credibility among customers which are often 1000 times bigger than us,” says Thierry Perrier, Chairman of Guichon Valves.
Valco Group France has also opened up its capital to FDEN (Fonds de Développements des Entreprises Nucléaires).
The role of FDEN – which is managed by Bpifrance and supported by industrial companies in the nuclear sector (EDF, Areva, GE-Alstom, Vinci and Eiffage) – is to support the new group with its development plans and provide the management team with its nuclear expertise and know-how.
Jacques Solleau, Director of FDEN, says, “By giving Valco Group the resources to grow, FDEN intends to offer the nuclear sector a solid and competitive French specialist in nuclear valves. The Valco Group, with its engineering offices and range of specific products, is now able to support development in the sector both in France and abroad.”
Stéphane Galichet, Managing Director of Valco Group France, adds, “These two very separate operations (the merger with Guichon Valves and opening the group’s capital to FDEN) allow Valco to enter a new phase. In relation to Guichon Valves, the complementarity of products and international sites will make the new group a major player at a global level in technical and special valves, as well as in critical industrial processes. Welcoming FDEN as a shareholder will allow the group to develop in-depth knowledge in the nuclear field and improve its response to the largest customers. “
“This is a new phase in the development of Valco Group France. These two operations fit perfectly with Argos Wityu’s investment philosophy, which is designed to support managers and accelerate development within companies – a strategy implemented by the management team over the last two years, particularly by opening new sites abroad and strengthening the team, “says Gilles Mougenot, Chairman of Argos Wityu.
About Valco Group France (www.valcogroup.fr)
Valco Group France, founded in 1949, is a European group specialising in the design, production and maintenance of industrial valves for the energy (gas, nuclear and oil), chemicals and industrial markets. With 234 employees and a presence in France, South Africa, Australia and the Middle East, the group has globally recognised expertise in cryogenic valves for the liquefied natural gas industry.
About Guichon Valves (www.guichon.com)
Guichon Valves is an independent European company established in 1921 that designs, manufactures, assembles and tests a complete range of high performance, manual and motorised, special and custom-made valves for the petrochemical, chemical, fine chemical, pharmaceutical, nuclear and naval armaments industries with demanding requirements of total reliability.
About Argos Wityu (www.argos-soditic.com)
Established in 1989, Argos Wityu is an independent European private equity partnership with offices in Paris, Geneva, Milan and Brussels, which focuses on majority takeovers of medium sized companies (MBOs, MBIs, BIMBOs, spin-offs, restructuring and external growth). Funds managed and advised by Argos Wityu (€700m) acquire majority stakes for transaction amounts of between €10m and €60m. Since it was founded, Argos Wityu has carried out over 60 asset transfer operations.
Argos Wityu has an innovative investment strategy, involving takeovers of companies with high transformation potential, requiring the particular involvement of shareholders alongside management and whose value creation strategy favours leveraged growth.
FDEN (Fonds de Développement des Entreprises Nucléaires – the Nuclear Companies Development Fund), managed by Bpifrance Investissement, invests amounts of between €1m and €13m in minority equity or quasi equity holdings in companies with a significant level of activity in nuclear energy in France.
FDEN aims to contribute to strengthening the innovation capacity and competitiveness of operators in the nuclear sector, as well as supporting the necessary consolidation of the sector to encourage the emergence of large SMEs.
- Valco Group France: Stéphane Galichet (CEO)
- Argos Wityu: Gilles Mougenot (Partner), Raphaël Bazin (Head of Investments), Samuel Touboul (Business Manager), Sonia Popoff (press relations)
- FDEN: Jacques Solleau (Head of Sector Funds), Thierry Deleuze (Head of Investments), Jean-Philippe Luce (Head of Investments), Jeremie Swiecznik (Lawyer)
- M&A: Kepler Corporate Finance (Olivier Dardel)
- Legal: Olswang (Christophe Gaschin, Stanislas Marmion, Caroline Pucel)/August & Debouzy (Julien Wagmann, Antoine Reboulot)
- Strategic: Estin & Co (Geoffroy Rupprecht, Marco Maeder)
- Financial: Eight Advisory (Eric Demuyt, Benoit Bestion, Nicolas Bayle, Nicolas Cohen) / Deloitte (Tristan Doquet-Chassaing, Armel Pedron, Arnaud de Vienne)
- Tax: Arsène Taxand (Franck Chaminade, Remy Bonnaud)
- Labour relations: Soulier (Véronique Vincent, Emilie Ducorps-Prouvost)
- Insurance: Brugmann (Benoit Verron)