Global Niche Specialty Chemicals Business Enhanced By Strategic Operating Initiatives Implemented Since Carve-Out From Goodyear Tire & Rubber
GREENWICH, CT, September 8, 2006 -- Littlejohn & Co., a private investment firm that applies an operational approach to building middle market companies undergoing fundamental change, today announced the sale of Eliokem, a worldwide manufacturer of niche specialty chemicals to AXA Private Equity, for approximately 130 million euro ($166 million).
Littlejohn acquired Eliokem in 2001 in a corporate carve-out from the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. Eliokem's products include specialty resins for the painting and coating industry, antioxidants and performance enhancing polymers used in plastic applications and latex for tire cord. Eliokem has annual revenues of approximately 150 million euro ($192 million).
"We are extremely pleased with the results of the strategic and operating initiatives that were implemented since we established Eliokem as an independent company," said Michael I. Klein, President of Littlejohn & Co. "Eliokem is performing very well and Jacques Collonge and his team have worked successfully with us to build this business globally, growing both revenue and earnings over the past five years, and to unlock its true value despite persistent negative raw material cost and currency movements. We believe that Eliokem will successfully leverage its global customer and employee base as it pursues its next phase of growth."
Under Littlejohn's ownership, the firm's principals have worked closely with Eliokem's management team to restructure and grow the business. During the five year investment, Littlejohn supported Eliokem through the successful integration of the company's global operations, construction of a new production facility in China, manufacturing and plant restructurings, and several new product launches.
Edmund J. Feeley, Managing Director of Littlejohn, said, "Eliokem now has a solid foundation that will allow a strong partner in AXA Private Equity to achieve a new level of profitable growth."
David E. Simon, a Principal at Littlejohn added, "As operationally focused investors, we are pleased that Littlejohn was able to help make the business much more competitive on a global basis and establish a strategy for the long-term."
"Littlejohn has supported our growth since our beginning as an independent organization and their expertise was particularly valuable as we established a broader presence in Asia and built a new facility in China to serve that region," said Mr. Collonge, CEO of Eliokem. "We have greatly valued our partnership with Littlejohn and we now look forward to continuing the company's growth with our new partners at AXA Private Equity."
Eliokem is a worldwide manufacturer, marketer and distributor of niche specialty chemicals. The Company supplies its industry leading products to a diverse range of end markets and customers across the globe. Headquartered outside Paris in Villejust, France, Eliokem has three manufacturing facilities in France, the U.S. and China.
About Littlejohn & Co., LLC
Founded in 1996, Littlejohn & Co., LLC is a private equity firm that makes control equity investments in mid-sized companies that are undergoing a fundamental change in strategy, operations or growth that can benefit from its operational and strategic approach. The firm is based in Greenwich, Connecticut. The firm manages in excess of $1 billion in committed capital and is currently investing Littlejohn Fund III, a $650 million fund closed in 2005. For more information, visit www.littlejohnllc.com or Littlejohn can be reached at 203-552-3500.