Procuritas Forms Nordic Specialist Group

Procuritas Partners acquired three transport and service businesses from BTL’s specialist division in a December deal with an estimated value of SKr 350 million (ecu 40 million). The three businesses, all with strong market positions in the Nordic region, have been brought together in the Nordic Specialist Group (NSG), which will have around 600 employees and a consolidated 1997 turnover of approximately SKr 720 million.

The three units acquired were: ScanVan, Skandia Transport and Scandinavian Garment Service (SGS).

ScanVan is the leading removal company in Scandinavia, operating strong brand names including Kungsholms Express & Spedition in Sweden, Adams Transport Co. In Denmark and Majortrans Norge and Frogner International in Norway. Employing 270 workers throughout the Nordic region, ScanVan has annual sales of around SKr 335 million.

Skandia Transport is the leading Swedish car transportation and pre-delivery inspection company, serving customers such as Svenska Volkswagen, Ford and BMW. It has 90 staff and forecast turnover of SKr 90 million for 1997.

Scandinavian German Services is the Nordic leader in hanging garment transportation and distribution. Its membership of the Faxion network enables the company to offer very efficient deliveries from manufacturers to retailers. The 240-strong business predicted 1997 revenues of SKr 206 million.

The acquisitions to form NSG represented the second transaction for the Procuritas Capital Partners II fund, which has raised more than SKr 750 million to date and will hold a final closing in March of this year. The fund invested for 90% of NSG. The balance is held by the management team, led by Mats Millbourn, who headed BTL’s specialist division. Unibank provided senior debt facilities for the deal.

The new owners are confident that NSG will expand strongly in future, both by acquisition in the highly fragmented European transport industry and through organic growth. Investment manager Lars Krogsgaard said Procuritas also saw room to enhance productivity and profitability within NSG, and confirmed the shareholders’ intention of seeking a listing within three to five years.