Abris Capital Partners has successfully completed a tender offer for the shares of Graal S.A., a fast-growing fish processing company, listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE) in Poland. Abris will partner with the founder of Graal, Mr. Boguslaw Kowalski, to grow the company’s operations in the region and to further expand its product range.
On 25th August, 2016, Abris partnered with the founder of the business to launch the public-to-private (P2P) transaction. The bid was conditional on obtaining an acceptance level from the company’s shareholders of at least 90%. In mid-October, the tender offer was successfully concluded, securing formal acceptances in excess of 95%. On 23rd November, 2016 following successful completion of a squeeze-out procedure taking its ownership to 100%, Abris will proceed with the delisting of the company from the WSE over coming two months. The transaction is the first P2P transaction in which a private equity fund has partnered with a business founder to complete a tender offer for 100% of a company’s shares, and to subsequently delist the business from the WSE.
With annual revenues of over €250 million, Graal is the largest and fastest-growing fish processing company in Central and Eastern Europe. It manufactures a wide range of fish-based products (including canned, smoked and chilled products) as well as a number of meat-based prepared foods. The company produces both branded products (for example, ‘’Graal’’ and ‘SuperFish’’) as well as being a major private label supplier. It operates from four manufacturing facilities in Poland and exports to over 20 countries in Europe, North America and Japan. The company employs over 2,500 people using the most advanced production technologies and utilizing industry-leading quality assurance practices.
Wojciech Jezierski, Investment Director at Abris:
“Graal has a strong and well-established market position in Poland. Over many years, it has demonstrated an ability to grow organically, integrate acquisitions, and introduce new high-quality and innovative products. We are going to support the company on a path that combines further organic growth in combination with an active acquisition program, with an emphasis on further expanding export sales. This growth will take advantage of current and proposed expansion of Graal’s production facilities.”
Abris Capital Partners is making the investment in Graal from its newly-launched Fund III. The Fund, targeted at mid-market businesses in the largest economies of Central & Eastern Europe, is aiming to raise €500m and has already attracted commitments to its first close from European and North American institutional investors. The fundraising process will extend into 2017 and Graal will be the first transaction to be completed by the new Fund; other opportunities are under active investigation.