April 20, 2021
Los Angeles Business Journal
By Pat Maio
Century City-based private equity firm OpenGate Capital has purchased Kongsberg Precision Cutting Systems from Esko-Graphics, a Belgian software manufacturer.
The move accelerates the pace of deal-making by OpenGate following 2020’s pandemic-induced slowdown.
Kongsberg, a provider of digital cutting systems and hardware solutions for the packaging and related sectors, was established in 1965. The company has 400 employees with operations in Belgium, the Czech Republic and Norway.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
OpenGate managed more than $1 billion in assets as of the end of 2020.
“With the heightened focus on digitization in the industrial sector, Kongsberg is well-positioned to develop new operational efficiencies and innovative solutions to drive organic growth,” Andrew Nikou, OpenGate’s founder and chief executive, said in a statement.
OpenGate, which also has an office in Paris, invests in companies that generate up to $1 billion in revenue annually. The acquisition highlights OpenGate’s long history of investing in Europe, as well as its focus within the industrial sector.
Kongsberg is the eighth investment and fifth corporate carve-out in OpenGate’s second institutional fund, OpenGate Capital Partners II & II-A LP.
OpenGate closed the fund in November 2019 at approximately $585 million, which was 30% higher than the firm’s initial target of $450 million.
OpenGate has made more than 30 acquisitions since its founding in 2005 and has seen a steady uptick in its portfolio activity this year.
Last month, OpenGate sold the first of two divisions of portfolio company SMAC, a global manufacturer of waterproofing and building envelopes based in France that OpenGate acquired just over two years ago.
In one sale, OpenGate sold SMAC’s Axter unit, which makes waterproofing membranes, to shingle manufacturer IKO Industries Ltd. of Canada. OpenGate also plans to sell SMAC divisions Skydome and Essemes Services, which it had hoped to divest in March.
SMAC was acquired by OpenGate from Paris-based Colas in February 2019.
Also last month, OpenGate agreed to buy the ScioTeq and Treality Simulation Visual Systems divisions from TransDigm Group Inc. in Cleveland. ScioTeq and Treality manufacture “visualization solutions” for military and air traffic control markets.
In March, OpenGate portfolio company Duraco Specialty Tapes purchased Illinois-based Filmquest Group from a private seller. Filmquest makes polyester and specialty films.