EQT sells hoist company for $53m

The Nordic firm’s turnaround fund purchased Germany’s Pfaff Beteiligungs two years ago, and has since increased sales from $64m to nearly $90m.

EQT Partners has sold German lifting and moving equipment business Pfaff Beteiligungs for $53 million (€36 million) in an all-cash transaction to publicly listed US conglomerate Columbus McKinnon.

EQT acquired an 85 percent stake in the German company, also known as Pfaff-silberblau, in 2006 for an undisclosed amount. The investment was made from the firm’s turnaround, or opportunity fund, which closed on €350 million in December 2005 and now has roughly €372 million in committed capital.

At the time it purchased Pfaff-silberblau, EQT said the company employed 325 people and had annual revenues of roughly $64 million. The private equity firm noted that in 2006, the company was “heavily indebted and underperforming”, but now is profitable. Last year, the company’s revenues were nearly $90 million and it employs “more than 300” workers, EQT said.

Other portfolio companies recently purchased by EQT’s opportunity fund include German clothing chain Strauss Innovations and Valeo, a French automotive group. Both were acquired in May for an undisclosed sum.

EQT has raised €11 million across 11 private equity funds. It is headquartered in Stockholm and has offices in Copenhagen, Helsinki, Oslo, Frankfurt, Munich, New York, Zurich, Warsaw, Shanghai and Hong Kong.