Aura in secondary

Aura, the Swedish long life lighting manufacturer, has been sold by Bridgepoint to Nordic mid-market private equity investor FSN Capital Partners AS.

The sale price is not being disclosed although Bridgepoint is reported to have generated a very significant multiple on the investment. Bridgepoint originally acquired Aura in a SEK205m (€22m) buyout in June 2000 from US parent Durolite International Inc. In 2000, Aura generated annual sales in excess of SEK200m (€21.5m). Under Bridgepoint’s ownership, Aura’s EBITDA has grown by more than 60% to SEK 49m in 2005 (€5.3m).

Aura’s headquarters and main sales office is based in Stockholm, its manufacturing facility is located in Karlskrona in Southern Sweden and it is represented in 20 other countries including the US. The company employs 160 staff.

Bridgepoint Partner Graham Oldroyd, said: “Aura has enlarged its customer base, has expanded its sales inside its core Nordic market and in Germany, the rest of Europe and into the US, and has introduced important new long life lamp variants, building a strong base for future further development.”

Debt was provided by HSH Nordbank, Copenhagen Branch.

Advisers involved in the transaction were: for Bridgepoint – MCF Corporate Finance, Vinge Advokatbyrå (legal), Ernst & Young Stockholm (financial), Oxdonian (vendor market due diligence), Halcrow Group Limited (environmental); for FSN Capital Partners AS – Icon Investment Banking (corporate finance), Hamilton Advokatbyrå (legal) and Deloitte (tax and financial).