Bridgepoint makes yachts of money from Navimo sale

Duke Street Capital has purchased Navimo, the largest pan-European provider of equipment and accessories to the recreational marine sector, from Bridgepoint Capital for a reported €120m.

The deal is subject to approval for the European competition authorities and close is scheduled for September 2004. It will be funded from the €845m Duke Street 5 fund.

Duke Street will own 80% with the company’s management team taking a 20% interest.

The agreement between the two private equity houses was reached in a comparatively short space of time with the offer memo only being released in April.

Mark Foulds, a director at Duke Street’s Paris office, was a director at Bridgepoint until August 2003. He said: “I had advantage because I knew exactly what Navimo had been through with Bridgepoint and had a good understanding of where they had been successful and where they had had difficulty. However, while it meant I knew where to look in terms of due diligence, all parties had access to the same information.”

Bridgepoint made the original purchase in July 1999 for an undisclosed figure. Navimo, which operates in 90 countries including the US, provides a full range of equipment and accessories to the market, for recreational yachts and motorboats up to 50 meters. For the year ending 30th September the Group, which has 680 employees, is forecast to generate a €120 million turnover.

Duke Street Capital was advised by Calyon (M&A advisor) and Linklaters (legal advisor). ING will be arranging and underwriting the debt facilities for the acquisition.

Bridgepoint was advised by BNP Paribas (M&A advisor) et CMS Bureau Francis Lefebvre (legal advisor).