Total investment generates 7 x money multiple and proceeds of more than €1.6bn

European private equity firm Cinven today announces that it has successfully completed the sale of its remaining 15.3 million shares in Amadeus IT Holding, S.A. (“Amadeus” or “the Group”), the global travel transaction processor and provider of advanced technology solutions, at a price of €12.60 per share generating gross proceeds of €193 million.  

Overall, Cinven has generated 7 times its original investment in Amadeus for the Third Cinven fund, realising gross proceeds of more than €1.6 billion.  Cinven and BC Partners originally backed the public to private of Amadeus from the Madrid, Paris and Frankfurt stock exchanges for €4.34 billion in July 2005.   

During Cinven’s ownership of Amadeus:

  • With Cinven’s support, Amadeus invested more than €1bn in product development that included the launch of Altea, an extensive range of IT solutions for the airline industry. Altea has subsequently grown from a nascent business to support the mission critical IT systems of 95 major airlines 
  • The Group grew its GDS market share to more than 37% from 29% at acquisition
  • Revenues grew by 48% and EBITDA by 84% driven by increased efficiencies
  • New management was appointed to Opodo, the online travel agent owned by Amadeus, which underwent a major turnaround and was successfully sold in February 2011 for €450m representing an EBITDA multiple of 11.7x 
  • The business generated strong cash flows enabling a reduction in the net debt that allowed a dividend recapitalisation in May 2007. The Group continued to reduce its net debt to EBITDA ratio to 1.8 x in June 2011

Cinven generated €223 million when it sold its original stake in Amadeus at the time of the Group’s listing on the Madrid Stock Exchange in April 2010.  This final sale follows a number of sell-downs subsequent to the IPO which cumulatively generated a 7 x return.

Commenting on the transaction, Stuart McAlpine of Cinven said:

“Given current market volatility, we believe it is testament to the strength of the Amadeus business and management team that we are able to realise our remaining shares and generate a highly attractive return from our investment.

“Our investment in Amadeus also demonstrates our ability to use our sector-based expertise to originate and execute complex transactions, in this case, via a public to private from the Madrid, Paris and Frankfurt stock exchanges, with co-investors BC Partners and three airline shareholders – Air France, Lufthansa and Iberia.  During our ownership, the business underwent significant change increasing its global market share from 29% in 2005 to 37% in 2009. Its IT solutions business grew from a small contribution of Group revenue to over 22% in 2011. We have been delighted with the performance of Amadeus during our ownership.”