Cifa designed and manufactured machinery for the production, transportation and pouring of concrete used in the construction industry: cement mixers, concrete pumps, steel forms and truck mounted equipment. It held a dominant position in its home Italian market and was ranked third worldwide. The business was acquired from Ferruzzi Group, which was undergoing significant restructuring, in December 1995.
At time of acquisition the construction sector in Italy was experiencing a downturn. The company had fared well in overseas markets where sales had been increasing but was in need of further impetus domestically. A new management team was tasked with revitalising the business in the light of expected improvements in Italian construction. The strategy was to increase the rate of product development while mounting an aggressive sales and marketing campaign at home and using its recently developed international distribution network.
After two years Cifa was performing in accordance with its strategy and on budget. Cinven and co-investors sold their interest to a local private equity firm.
Multiple returned on investment: 2.7x