Three Hills Capital Partners invests a further €60m in Aquafil

Monday, February 15, 2016

Three Hills Capital Partners ("THCP") is pleased to announce the closing of a further €60m investment in Aquafil S.p.A. The deal was financed with €35m from Three Hills Capital Partners’ funds, while the remaining capital was provided by high-calibre co-investors.

Aquafil is a world leading player in the production of nylon filaments for textile floorings and of synthetic fibres for the apparel and sports industries. The Company services the flooring and textile industries through 2 main business units: (i) Bulked Continuous Filament (BCF), representing approximately 80% of 2015 sales and consisting of synthetic yarns for textile flooring, and (ii) Nylon Textile Filament (NTF) representing c.20% of 2015 sales and involving synthetic fibres for the textile manufacturers.

The Group, which employs more than 2,700 people, is present in 8 countries across 3 continents thanks to its sophisticated production plants in the US, Europe and China. Although No. 2 worldwide in terms of volume, Aquafil is widely recognised as the No. 1 leader in terms of R&D and innovation, as proven by their successful ECONYL ® project, the first Nylon 6 fibre in the world made by 100% regenerated material.

Aquafil has a leading market position on a global scale, having consolidated its status in the core US and China markets over the last 6 years.

Since THCP’s first involvement in the business, the company has shown excellent financial performance, with revenues reaching over €500m in 2015, generating EBITDA in excess of €60m in 2015. The sales growth was largely achieved through the evolution of the BCF business unit and its expansion in Asia and the US.

As a result of THCP’s presence in Aquafil since 2009, the team has a very deep knowledge of the business and a very close relationship with the management team, headed by Giulio Bonazzi and comprised of outstanding professionals.

Giulio Bonazzi, CEO and controlling shareholder of Aquafil commented: “So far the cooperation with Three Hills Capital Partners was very good and should come up further investment opportunities in the coming years, we are going to continue working with them.”

Mauro Moretti, founder and Managing Partner of Three Hills Capital Partners, commented:  “We are very pleased to once again be the preferred financial partner for Aquafil and its management team. Having worked with them since 2009, we have been able to build a unique and solid partnership which has given very satisfactory results for both parties. We continue to strongly believe in the vision of Giulio Bonazzi and his team for the coming years to create a global market leader recognized for its R&D skills.”

Michele Prencipe, Partner at Three Hills Capital Partners and board member of Aquafil, added: “This deal is a great testament of what we want to represent for successful entrepreneurs across Europe; a long-term partner able to respond in a tailor-made way to the different needs of growing businesses. At the same time we want to remain focused on working alongside unique companies bringing to them hybrid capital solutions delivered by an investment team with a private equity mind-set.”

The legal advisers on the transaction were Linklaters on behalf of Three Hills Capital Partners, and Freshfields on behalf of Aquafil. Bain acted as advisers for the commercial due diligence.

Aquafil S.p.A

For over 50 years, Aquafil has been one of the leading players, both in Italy and globally, in the production of Polyamide 6: a landmark in terms of quality and product innovation. Additionally, the Group is a leader in the research of new production models for sustainable development. This commitment to research and development leads to the regular renewal of processes and products thanks to continuous investments of capital and knowledge.

For more information, please visit www.aquafil.com