Funds Advised by Apax Partners to Acquire Azelis From 3i

26.02.2015 -

Atlas Holding, the holding for pan-European specialty chemicals distributor Azelis, has signed a binding agreement to sell the company to funds advised by gloal private equity investor Apax Partners.

Azelis' works councils are said to look favorably on the transaction, which is expected to close in the second quarter of 2015.

Private equity investor 3i and funds managed by 3i acquired a majority stake in Azelis in 2007.

Under 3i's aegis, the distributor's operational structure has been transformed from a decentralized European business into an integrated group, operating under one brand and supplying customers and principals in the coatings, chemicals, rubber and plastic additives, food and health, animal nutrition, pharmaceutical and personal care industries.

Since 2007, Azelis has significantly expanded its geographic footprint in the UK, Benelux, and Central and Eastern Europe and entered the Asian chemical distribution market through several new offices in China, Japan and Southeast Asia.

Substantial operational improvements were also implemented across the organization, 3i said.

Under the current management team led by Hans-Joachim Müller as CEO, Apax Partners said it intends to continue Azelis' strategic focus on growing the business through ongoing development of its specialist product portfolio and continuing to extend its global reach, both organically and through acquisitions.

Going forward, the CEO said management will seek to drive growth through "further building a lateral value chain in the market segments it serves."