Livingstone’s Industrial sector team has advised the shareholders of Keraben Grupo SA, a leading manufacturer of branded floor and wall ceramic tiles, on its sale to UK-listed group Victoria plc. Victoria acquired 100% of the shares of Keraben for $324 million. Livingstone and Baird Capital acted as financial co-advisers to the sellers.
Headquartered in Castellón, the heart of the Spanish ceramics industry, Keraben designs, manufactures and distributes mid to high-end ceramic flooring and wall tiles, with a special focus on residential refurbishment. Keraben mainly distributes its products in Europe through independent specialty stores with an increasing presence in DIY chains. Keraben is a very strong business, led by a proven and highly talented management team who have identified and executed a clear strategy to drive profitable growth and gain market share.
In 2014, Livingstone advised Tensile Capital Management in the acquisition of a majority shareholding in Keraben with the aim of creating a solid and stable financial framework that allowed the acceleration of the Company’s growth. In this context, Keraben’s revenues have grown steadily from $115 million in 2014 to $140 million in 2016, registering a consolidated EBITDA that significantly increased from $29 million to $43 million.
Established in 1895 and listed since 1963 and on AIM since 2013, Victoria, is an international manufacturer and distributor of innovative flooring products. Victoria is the UK’s largest carpet manufacturer and the second largest in Australia. The Group, which is headquartered in Kidderminster, has operations in the UK, Belgium, the Netherlands and Australia and employs approximately 1,800 people across 20 sites.
The acquisition of Keraben further enhances Victoria’s strategic plans based both on organic growth and a combination of international high quality corporate acquisitions. This transaction, highly complementary to its products offering, will back Victoria’s expansion in the European ceramic market, diversifying revenues and improving international exposure with expanded profits generated outside the United Kingdom. Victoria and its Keraben division are ideally positioned to continue to grow by selective acquisitions in the ceramic sector.
The Keraben management team will continue to lead the business as part of Victoria, to develop its growth.
José Luis Lanuza, CEO of Keraben, commented: “After working successfully with Livingstone on the acquisition by Tensile in 2014, we wanted to have their hands-on support and guidance again. In this transaction, the Livingstone team also proved highly committed, and their experience, sector knowledge and professionalism added great value and contributed significantly to completing a deal that both the shareholders and management team are delighted with. We are very satisfied to have Victoria on board and we look forward to growing the business with them over the coming years.”
Neil Collen, Partner at Livingstone, remarked: “The Keraben deal is a very important one in the context of the consolidating European tile industry. Spain is a world leader in the ceramics sector, and will continue to see deals being concluded by both national and international investors. He added: “It was a real pleasure working with José Luis and his management team again. They are highly professional and focused, and have great strategic vision. I am convinced that they will continue to drive exceptional growth for the business and for Victoria.”