Livingstone has advised Kurtz GmbH (‘Kurtz’), a subsidiary of Kurtz Ersa Group (‘Kurtz Ersa’), on the sale of its mechanical manufacturing division to IZW Innovative Zerspanungstechnik Wiebelbach GmbH (‘IZW’).
With a turnover of approximately EUR 265 million in 2019 and more than 1,300 employees, Kurtz Ersa is one of the leading high-tech companies in its field worldwide with a long-standing tradition. Within the group, Kurtz produces foundry machines and machines for the processing of particle foams. In the course of its strategic repositioning, the company has sold its mechanical manufacturing division in Wiebelbach and will be focusing on mechanical and plant engineering in the Automotive and Protective Solutions areas in the future. The mechanical manufacturing division is specialized in the processing of complex and large components for virtually all metalworking industries with a focus on sawing, welding, cutting and surface treatment.
The business operations with a headcount of 65 will be taken over by the newly founded IZW. Its managing partner, Ralf Reich, is not unfamiliar to Kurtz Ersa. He and his company have already been working for the group for many years. Uwe Rothaug, Managing Director of Kurtz GmbH, says: “We are pleased to have found a buyer who brings in a high level of expertise in mechanical processing and will fully utilize and further expand the business operations in Wiebelbach.” The sale was preceded by a comprehensive restructuring of Kurtz. “The sale also marks the completion of the restructuring of Kurtz GmbH, which became necessary due to changes in drive technology in the automotive industry, changed consumer behavior with regard to plastic packaging and increased competitive pressure from Asia”, said Rothaug.
Ralf Reich, who has been active in the field of cutting technology for many years and has an excellent network in the industry, sees the acquisition as an opportunity to supplement the business activities of his existing company based in Wetzlar. “Through this acquisition, we will be able to provide our customers with a broader range of services. In addition, Kurtz Ersa has agreed to keep a large part of the in-house parts production on site which is a great opportunity for both sides to maintain the contract manufacturing business in the long term”, says Reich. In particular, the prospect of taking over highly qualified staff was essential for Reich. “For me, it was particularly important that the employees would stay with us with their know-how and significant industry expertise. Therefore, I am more than pleased that all employees are now part of IZW,” Reich adds. For Kurtz’ customers, the sale also brings important advantages: the range of services hitherto provided by Kurtz will be expanded by IZW.
“We are delighted that the shareholders and management of Kurtz have once again retained us to advise them on the sale of a business unit. The search for an experienced partner with a long-term orientation was particularly challenging, especially in light of the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic. We are pleased that we have found a buyer who not only has a high level of industry expertise and competence, but a long-standing business relationship with Kurtz Ersa as well. We would like to thank all parties involved for the excellent teamwork”, said Dr. André Schröer, Partner at Livingstone in Düsseldorf.
The seller was legally advised by Erlanger Treuhand GmbH, Erlangen, and the team of Mr. Ulrich Bail, attorney at law, tax adviser and auditor.