Private equity fund Mid Europa Partners has taken over retail chain Profi from Polish Enterprise Investors in a deal worth EUR 533 million.
The buyer said this was the largest deal ever completed by a private equity firm in Romania and the largest retail deal in the country’s history. The transaction is pending regulatory approvals and should be finalized in the first quarter of 2017.
„Profi is the fastest growing food retail operator in Romania and is ideally positioned to build on its leadership position to deliver organic growth in the future. We have closely followed Profi’s development over the last few years and are excited to have the opportunity to work together with management to continue Profi’s success story. The acquisition of Profi underscores our commitment to Romania and is the second landmark transaction in the country after our acquisition of Regina Maria last year,” said Nikolaus Bethlen, partner of Mid Europa.
Enterprise Investors had taken over Profi in 2009 for EUR 66 million. At that time, the retailer had 60 stores and this year, the Profi chain is set to reach 500 stores across Romania. The retailer has close to 11,000 employees and expects sales of EUR 800 million this year.
Robert Knorr, co-managing partner and head of the retail and consumer practice at Mid Europa said that the fund has experience in creating true national champions.
„In 2011, the firm invested in Zabka Polska and developed it into the leading convenience retail operator in Poland. More recently Mid Europa, together with Cinven and Permira, announced the acquisition of Allegro, the leading on-line retailer in Poland,” said Knorr.
Advisors to Mid Europa Partners on the deal were Beragua (commercial), EY (financial), Dechert and Bondoc & Asociatii (legal).
Law firm RTPR Allen & Overy advised the seller.
In August 2015, Mid Europa Partners took over private healthcare services provider Regina Maria, in a deal estimated at around EUR 100 million.
This April, Enterprise Investors took over Noriel Group, the biggest toys and games retailer in Romania, announcing that it would pursue the same development strategy as in the case of Profi.