Sicko successor: Finexx acquires majority stake in industrial automation company

Cate­gory: Private Equity
25. March 2019

Zaisenhausen/ Stutt­gart — Finexx Unter­neh­mens­be­tei­li­gun­gen acqui­res a majo­rity stake in Sicko GmbH & Co KG as part of a long-term succes­sion plan. The company, based in Zaisen­hau­sen, Baden-Würt­­te­m­­berg, deve­lops and sells solu­ti­ons for the digi­tiza­tion and auto­ma­tion of proces­ses in the wood­wor­king indus­try. The brot­hers Carl and Jochen Sicko are the sellers of the shares. They will conti­nue to be mana­ging direc­tors and also share­hol­ders via a reverse share­hol­ding. The aim of the part­ner­ship is to conti­nue to bene­fit from the incre­asing demand for auto­ma­tion in the market and, above all, to herald new growth steps at Sicko through addi­tio­nal profes­sio­na­liza­tion. The tran­sac­tion, the details of which have been agreed not to be disc­lo­sed, has alre­ady been completed.

Sicko’s focus is on deve­lo­ping solu­ti­ons that help increase produc­tion effi­ci­ency by inter­lin­king machi­nes. Since its foun­da­tion in 1975 by Karl Sicko, the father of today’s mana­ging direc­tors, the company, which now has 40 employees, has grown steadily and serves nume­rous well-known custo­mers in the DACH region and world­wide, inclu­ding wood proces­sing compa­nies such as sawmills and planing mills, wood-based panel and furni­ture manu­fac­tu­r­ers, as well as wood machi­nery manu­fac­tu­r­ers. Annual sales exceed seven million euros; in view of well-filled order books, signi­fi­cant double-digit sales growth is expec­ted for the current year.

For Finexx, the tran­sac­tion marks the second invest­ment from its fund with a volume of 35 million euros, which was only closed at the end of 2018 — last Novem­ber, the specia­list for the further deve­lo­p­ment of medium-sized compa­nies acqui­red a majo­rity stake in GSE Vertrieb Biolo­gi­sche Nahrungs­er­gän­zung & Heil­mit­tel GmbH from Saar­brü­cken. At Sicko, the second invest­ment from the first Finexx fund, new invest­ments and addi­tio­nal know-how are now to be used to reach new levels of development.

“Sicko is a hidden cham­pion of the German SME sector and has an excel­lent repu­ta­tion in the indus­try. On this basis, we want to use new impe­tus to help drive forward the profes­sio­na­liza­tion of proces­ses and struc­tures as well as the expan­sion of capa­ci­ties, work­force and part­ner­ships. The deve­lo­p­ment of new busi­ness areas and markets as well as an expan­sion of the port­fo­lio are also on the list,” explains Matthias Heining (photo), who runs Finexx toge­ther with Dr. Markus Seilerand can draw on a combi­ned 30 years of opera­tio­nal and commer­cial exper­tise in the indus­trial and tech­no­logy sectors as well as in family-owned compa­nies. The market envi­ron­ment offers excel­lent pros­pects: In Germany, as the global market and tech­no­logy leader for wood­wor­king machi­nery, the importance of wood as a buil­ding mate­rial is incre­asing stron­gly again; many new appli­ca­ti­ons for the raw mate­rial are also emer­ging, inclu­ding in the wood-based mate­ri­als indus­try, pack­a­ging manu­fac­tu­r­ers, prefa­bri­ca­ted cons­truc­tion, energy gene­ra­tion, and window and front door cons­truc­tion. Dr. Seiler: “This increa­ses the need in produc­tion faci­li­ties for effec­tive, relia­ble machi­nes and systems that help drive intel­li­gent auto­ma­tion. Sicko has a key role to play in this.”

About Finexx
Finexx GmbH Unter­neh­mens­be­tei­li­gun­gen, based in Stutt­gart, is a consul­ting company foun­ded in 2013 that specia­li­zes in estab­lished medium-sized compa­nies. Typi­cal fields of acti­vity are growth invest­ment and acqui­si­tion finan­cing as well as the support of chan­ges in the share­hol­der struc­ture and succes­sion planning.

Finexx invests long-term funds (equity capi­tal of between 5 and 50 million euros), mainly in the form of majo­rity share­hol­dings, in compa­nies from the German-spea­king region, inclu­ding insu­rance compa­nies and pension funds. These have sales of EUR 10 million or more, a quali­fied manage­ment team, and can demons­trate sustainable earnings power and cash flow based on a successful busi­ness model.

The team has many years of indus­trial and manage­ment expe­ri­ence as well as profound know-how in the invest­ment sector — both are brought to bear for the successful further deve­lo­p­ment of compa­nies and in the asso­cia­ted change proces­ses. Finexx supports manage­ment by provi­ding active commer­cial and tech­ni­cal advice without inter­fe­ring with day-to-day opera­ti­ons, as well as a cross-indus­­try network.

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