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ATS Launches Voluntary Tender Offer for Global Food & Beverage Equipment Supplier CFT S.p.A.

CAMBRIDGE, ON - ATS Automation Tooling Systems Inc. (TSX: ATA) ("ATS" or the "Company"), an industry-leading automation solutions provider, today announced its intention to acquire, by way of a voluntary public tender offer, CFT S.p.A. (BIT: CFT) ("CFT"), an established global supplier to the food and beverage equipment market. The tender offer of €4.60 per share represents a total equity value of €88 million and a total enterprise value of €166 million (~C$260 million).
 
"This is a highly strategic transaction that will allow us to establish a broader growth platform for ATS in the regulated food and beverage equipment market, and positions us well in attractive niches," said Andrew Hider, CEO of ATS.  "With a 75-year track record, proven technology and a dedicated workforce of 900-plus employees, CFT enables us to capture more of the value chain in a vertical we covet for its stability and growth, and complements our recent MARCO acquisition. CFT also offers significant value creation potential for ATS shareholders as we work with the CFT team to apply the ATS Business Model to achieve cost and revenue synergies."
 
"As an industry leader in automation with a long track record of innovating for customers, ATS is ideally suited to take CFT to the next level in our markets," said Roberto Catelli, Representative of the Major Shareholders of CFT. "The major shareholders are very pleased to support this transaction as it will create both opportunity and value for CFT, our customers and employees in the years ahead."
 
Established in 1945 and headquartered in Parma, Italy, CFT serves a global customer base through its portfolio of market-leading brands and eight facilities in Italy, Spain, Germany and Ukraine. With 140 patents, the company is a technology leader in the attractive fresh produce sorting, processing, and packaging niches. In 2019, CFT generated revenue of €254 million and EBITDA of €17.5 million. Approximately 40% of its revenue comes from Europe, 23% from North America and the remainder from other regions. CFT derives 30% of its sales from single machines, 50% from complete systems, and 20% from aftermarket parts & services. The ordinary shares of CFT are currently listed on the AIM Italia stock exchange.
 
Significant Synergy Opportunity
 
ATS expects to achieve approximately €7 million in annual cost synergies within three years of closing, including elimination of CFT's public company costs, supply chain savings, and cost structure optimization. ATS also expects revenue synergies to generate approximately €7 million of EBITDA within three years from joint product development, cross-selling of complementary customer solutions and aftermarket initiatives. The transaction is expected to be accretive to ATS' earnings and cash flow per share in the first year following the acquisition. ATS is targeting a double-digit return on invested capital (ROIC) by the third year following completion of the acquisition.
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