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Stirling Square Capital Partners backs MBO of Cartonplast Group

January 2013


• Cartonplast is the European market leader for the processing and servicing of plastic layer pads used in the food and beverage industry for transporting glass containers

• German / Spanish transaction marks the pan-European private equity investor’s seventh acquisition from its second fund

7 January 2013 – Stirling Square Capital Partners (“Stirling Square”), the leading pan-European lower mid-market private equity firm, today announces the signing of acquisition documentation in respect of Cartonplast Group GmbH (“Cartonplast”), the European market leader in processing and servicing of reusable plastic layer pads (“PLP”) used in the food and beverage industry for transporting glass containers. The acquisition is subject to, amongst other matters, anti-trust approval and is for an undisclosed sum. As part of the transaction, Stirling Square and Cartonplast management will acquire 100% of Cartonplast from Synergo SGR SpA and the 50% stake in Cartonplast’s Madrid-based Iberian subsidiary that Cartonplast did not already own, from the Ferragut family.

PLPs are used for the safe and hygienic transportation of glass containers between the place of manufacture and filling. Cartonplast’s service is based on a unique closed-loop logistics system which encompasses the procurement, rental, cleaning and recycling of over 120 million PLP deliveries each year. As PLPs are re-usable and the entire closed-loop cycle is managed by Cartonplast, the service provides an environmentally sustainable basis for the packaging and transportation of glass containers.

Headquartered in Dietzenbach, Germany, Cartonplast employs over 400 people in nine countries, with 14 service centres across Europe. From this base, the company delivers PLPs to 133 glass manufacturers in 19 countries that ultimately deliver PLP-stacked containers to about 4,000 fillers; it is from these fillers that PLPs are then collected by Cartonplast for re-conditioning before further service.

Under the leadership of a broad senior executive team headed by CEO Joachim Kreuzburg and supported by Stirling Square, organic and external growth opportunities will be pursued in the European, Asian and Latin American markets.

Gregorio Napoleone, Partner at Stirling Square, said: “Cartonplast's unique business model and pan-European footprint, combined with its leadership position in the markets served, are attractive fundamentals and provide an excellent platform from which to grow the business. An experienced and ambitious management team is in place and initiatives are under way to expand Cartonplast beyond its historic boundaries. This transaction has a natural fit with Stirling Square’s strategy and we are enthusiastic at the prospect of placing our experience and capabilities in support of this team of entrepreneurial managers."

Joachim Kreuzburg, Cartonplast CEO since 2010, added: "In addition to fresh capital for our expansion, Stirling Square offers a truly international perspective for the future development of our business, both across Europe and in important new, growth markets such as Asia and Latin America. We will grow with our customers by providing a quality service across national boundaries and through diversification across new products and markets. With the support of Stirling Square I am confident on the future development of our business.”

Advisers to Stirling Square:
Fineurop Soditic – M&A Advisory
Rothschild – Debt Advisory
Latham & Watkins – Legal (M&A)
Clifford Chance – Legal (Banking)
KPMG – Financial and Tax Due Diligence, Structuring
LEK – Commercial Due Diligence
Roland Berger – Commercial Due Diligence
ERM – Environmental Due Diligence
Willis – Insurance Due Diligence

Advisers to Vendor:
UniCredit – M&A
Deloitte – Financial
DLA Piper – Legal
LEK - Commercial

– ENDS –

Notes to Editors

About Stirling Square Capital Partners
Stirling Square Capital Partners is a private equity firm which invests in lower mid-market companies with enterprise values of between €50m and €500m. The firm manages two funds, totaling €777m capital under management and has made eighteen investments since it was established in 2002.

About Cartonplast Group GmbH
Cartonplast is the European leader in marketing and servicing of polypropylene pads used as divider sheets in the transportation of glass containers for the food and beverage industry. The Group has developed a successful service model called Pool System: the Company rents polypropylene pads to glass beverage companies to move newly produced containers to filling facilities. Cartonplast manages logistics services to pick up pads from the bottlers and deliver them to company-operated cleaning facilities where pads, once cleaned and sterilised, are ready to be rented out for a next cycle.

For media enquiries please contact:

For Cartonplast
Michael Heikenfeld at Cartonplast, T: +49 6074 8531 28, E:

For Stirling Square
Fergus Wheeler at FTI Consulting + 44 20 7269 7259 fergus.wheeler@fticonsulting
Ellie Fixter at FTI Consulting +44 20 7269 7278