VBG Group divests Armaton

The VBG Group is divesting its Armaton product programme to Forankra, a company that is part of the Axel Johnson Group. The reason for the divestment is that the product programme is no longer compatible with the VBG Group’s business model.

Armaton, which offers a complete range of dropside pillars and dropside locking systems, was acquired by the VBG Group in 1990. At that time, Armaton’s products were focused on heavy-duty vehicles. Over the years, VBG Group’s business for dropside pillars for heavy-duty vehicles has declined and Armaton’s products are now aimed at lighter trucks.

–“Armaton is a premium brand and its products command high market shares, particularly in Sweden and the UK. The reason for our decision to divest Armaton is that the products target a different customer segment than those we focus on today. We therefore no longer have any synergies in our sales processes. However, the buyer will be able to enjoy such benefits”, explains Anders Birgersson, the VBG Group’s Managing Director and CEO.

VBG Group (publ) is an engineering group with wholly-owned companies in Europe, the USA, India and China. The Group´s operations are divided in three divisions – VBG Truck Equipment, Edscha Trailer Systems and Ringfeder Power Tramsmission – with products that are marketed under strong, well-known brands. The VBG Group B-share was introduced on the stock exchange in 1987 and is listed today on the Nasdaq OMX Nordic Exchange Stockholm, Small Cap list.

The acquiring company, Forankra, is a division of AxLoad, which is in turn a business area of Axel Johnson International. Forankra is Europe’s largest supplier of cargo lashing equipment and solutions for customers in the road, air and sea transportation sectors.

–“We work intensively to develop cargo-securing solutions by adding new, high-quality products that enable us to offer our customers a broader offering and to attract new customers. Armaton is precisely what we are looking for and I am very pleased with the acquisition”, says Per Englund, Managing Director of Forankra AB in Sweden.

Armaton currently has an annual turnover of approximately 7 MSEK and is part of the VBG Group’s VBG Truck Equipment division based in Vänersborg. The divestment will not have any impact on the number of people employed in the VBG Group. The takeover of the business is expected to occur at the end of June.

–“Our fundamental approach is growth through acquisitions, but it is also important that we streamline and focus our business”, concludes Anders Birgersson.

Lars Weibull AB acted as sell-side advisors in the transaction and if you want to learn more about the transaction fell free to contact project manager Anders Lorentzon on +46(0)706-188 275 or anders.lorentzon@weibull.se. Anders Steén, Moll Wendén Law Firm, has been part of the team to handle legal issues.

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