February 29, 2016
GCA Altium advises Ardian on its acquisition of d&b audiotechnik from Odewald and Cobepa
GCA Altium acted as exclusive financial adviser to Ardian, the independent private investment company, which together with existing management has acquired d&b audiotechnik GmbH from the investment companies Odewald & Compagnie and COBEPA. This latest Technology transaction – the 16th in the last year – sees GCA Altium build on its leading track record within this sector.
d&b, a global leader in the field of professional audio equipment, specializes in acoustic systems and has operations worldwide. The participation in d&b is already the 13th investment by Ardian LBO Fund V, which is capitalized at €2.8 billion. As part of the transaction, the existing management team, led by CEO Amnon Harman, Markus Strohmeier (Managing Director, Technology and Operations), Frank Bothe (Director R&D), Kay Lange (Director Finance), Hans-Peter Nüdling (Director Sales & Services) and Sabina Berloffa (Director Marketing) will also take a stake in the company, thus ensuring continuity for the further successful development of d&b. With the support of Ardian, d&b plans to further strengthen its leading global position. The parties have agreed not to reveal details of the transaction, and the conclusion of the transaction is still subject to approval by the relevant antitrust authorities.
d&b, which was founded in 1981 and is based in Backnang, Germany, is one of the world’s leading providers of professional premium audio technology. The company develops and produces high-quality sound systems for mobile and permanently installed applications. The spectrum of venues ranges from large stadiums and concert halls to theaters, opera houses, convention centers and cruise liners. With its systemic approach based on the interaction of amplifiers, speakers, accessories and interlinked software solutions, combined with dependable worldwide service and an exceptional training and support offering, d&b is uniquely positioned in the marketplace. Since the company’s acquisition by Odewald & Compagnie and COBEPA in 2011, sales have more than doubled from €44 million to €94 million in the financial year 2015.
The number of employees has also risen sharply from 200 in 2011 to around 350 today. Working alongside management, emphasis was placed on the internationalization of the company, the management team was strategically expanded, and the sales team was strengthened considerably. One of the main growth drivers at product level was the strategic development of the market for permanently installed audio systems, which was vigorously pursued in recent years, building on d&b’s outstanding market position in the area of mobile systems. As part of the internationalization process, new subsidiaries were founded in Europe, the USA and Japan, and the company’s production capacity was more than doubled. In particular, d&b achieved strong growth in the USA and Asia. Today, d&b operates in a total of more than 70 countries.