Global sheet and film manufacturer KlÃ¶ckner Pentaplast GmbH & Co. KG may be an acquisition target for private equity firm Blackstone Group LP.
London-based Cinven Ltd., which bought KlÃ¶ckner of Montabaur, Germany, in 2001, is shopping for a buyer, according to several industry sources and recent news reports from Europe. In an April 25 e-mail, Cinven spokesman Ed Bridges said the firm would not comment on the rumor.
Still, speculation has circulated in the market for months. On April 25, the Financial Times Deutschland reported a proposed purchase price of 1.3 billion to 1.5 billion euros (about $1.8 billion to $2 billion).
``KlÃ¶ckner is a very profitable company,'' said one industry source, speaking on condition of anonymity. ``They have a very strong position in a lot of markets. Cinven has held it since 2001, and it's kind of unusual for those guys to hold on to it for this long.''
KlÃ¶ckner, during the last year, has been making capacity additions at sites throughout the world. The company announced April 5 that it had purchased PVC film and sheet assets from Supreme Industries Ltd. of Mumbai, India. Supreme will manufacture for KlÃ¶ckner under a toll manufacturing agreement, according to KlÃ¶ckner.
Neither KlÃ¶ckner nor Supreme officials would not comment further on that project, but the firms plan to provide details during a May 11 news conference in Delhi.
KlÃ¶ckner set up a sales company in India in 2006, and is following up now with local production capabilities, said Joachim Kreuzburg, president of KlÃ¶ckner Pentaplast, Europe and Asia. In a news release, he cited growing demand for pharmaceutical and other specialty films.
Late last year, KlÃ¶ckner expanded capacity in Rayong, Thailand. In that project, officials added capacity for transverse-direction oriented shrink label films and polyester production to serve markets such as food and electronics packaging. The $6.4 million investment included a tentering line to produce shrink films for sleeves and caps.