Funds advised by Apax Partners acquire Plantasjen from EQT

 

4 December 2006

Oslo, 4 December 2006 Funds advised by Apax Partners today announced the acquisition of Plantasjen, a Nordic operator of garden centres, from funds advised by EQT Partners.

The company's stores provide a wide assortment of products for gardens and terraces as well as cut flowers and house plants.

Tore Thorstensen, Chairman of Plantasjen, said, "We have had an exciting five years developing the business with EQT as owners, and look forward to taking it to the next stage of development with Apax"

Alex Fortescue, Partner, Apax Partners Worldwide LLP, added, "Apax sees an exciting opportunity to work with management to rapidly grow Plantasjen both in the Nordic countries and elsewhere."

EQT acquired Plantasjen in October 2001. The company has since expanded into the Swedish and Finnish markets and established a total of 45 new stores. It is now the leading Nordic garden centre chain with 72 stores across Norway, Sweden and Finland.

These measures have led to strong growth and increased earnings. Plantasjen's sales increased threefold from NOK 840 million (€103m) in 2001 to approximately NOK 2500 million (€306m) anticipated in 2006, and in the same period EBITDA increased from approximately NOK 100 million (€12m) to well over NOK 300 million (€36m).

The sale is conditional on approval by the relevant competition authorities.

UBS and Jotunfjell advised Apax on the acquisition.

Retail and Consumer is one of Apax's five key industry sectors. Apax has a network of local offices across the world, including Stockholm, London, Munich, New York, Mumbai, Madrid, Milan and Tel Aviv.

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Notes to Editors

About Apax Partners
Apax Partners is one of the world's leading private equity investment groups.  It operates across the United States, Europe, Israel and Asia and has more than 30 years of investing experience.  Funds under the advice of Apax Partners total $20 billion around the world.  These Funds provide long-term equity financing to build and strengthen world-class companies.  Apax Partners Funds invest in companies across its global sectors of Tech & Telecom, Retail & Consumer, Media, Healthcare and Financial & Business Services. For more information visit: www.apax.com

For further information, please contact:

Ben Harding
Head of Communications
T: +44 20 7872 6300
E: ben.harding@apax.com

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