Riverside Expands European Communications Platform November 03, 2008
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Private Equity Firm Adds Scandinavian Corporate Communications Consultancy
(November 3, 2008) – The Riverside Company continued to expand its international communications company Sage Holdings, adding Swedish corporate communications and web services firm Hallvarsson & Halvarsson. The transaction is Riverside’s 29th acquisition of 2008, and the 10th investment of the year for the busy Riverside Europe Fund III (“REF III”), which provided equity for the transaction.
Founded in 1995 with headquarters in Stockholm, H&H offers the most comprehensive suite of corporate communications services in Sweden. The H&H business model closely mirrors that of Sage’s other holdings, as it provides services in corporate communication, media, crisis management, M&A communication, investor relations, web consultancy, CSR and public affairs. H&H serves many of the largest Swedish corporations as well as a host of international blue chip companies active in the Nordic region.
“H&H has an impressive client list, but also offers much more,” said Riverside Partner Kai Köppen. “The company has a proven ability to build relationships that last. Its retention rate speaks to the firm’s exceptional service and highly effective management team, which helps explain its consistent pattern of growth. In addition, H&H’s investor relations practice should benefit from the current challenging economic environment as economic instability heightens the importance of how companies interact with the media, investors and the public.”
“This transaction opens doors for everyone involved,” said Dr. Oliver Niedermaier, President and CEO of Sage Holdings. “The Sage concept has been very well received by clients and potential partners, and there will be immediate benefits for both Hallvarsson & Halvarsson and our two existing businesses, D.F. King & Co. and M:Communications. H&H will be able to access new prospects through relationships held by M:Comm and D.F. King, allowing it to expand beyond the Nordic region, while H&H can help speed D.F. King’s and M:Comm’s entry into the Scandinavian market and allow Sage to more smoothly expand into Continental Europe as well as Asia.”
Working with Köppen on the transaction from Riverside were Peter Schaberger, Associate Partner, and Justin Kent, Associate.
The Riverside Company is the largest global private equity firm focused on the smaller end of the middle market (“SEMM”) and is one of the industry’s most experienced leveraged buyout investors. Riverside invests in premier SEMM companies valued up to $150 million and partners with strong management teams to build companies through acquisitions and value-added growth. Since its founding in 1988, the firm has invested in 205 transactions with a total enterprise value of $4.4 billion. Riverside’s current portfolio in North America, Europe and Asia consists of 68 companies with combined annual sales of $3.2 billion, EBITDA of $517 million and more than 14,000 employees. Riverside offers certainty to close and can complete acquisitions in as little as 45 days, thanks to its more than $2 billion of capital under management, over 180 professionals in 18 offices (Atlanta, Brussels, Budapest, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Eindhoven, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Madrid, Munich, New York, Prague, San Francisco, Seoul, Stockholm, Tokyo and Warsaw), and long-standing relationships with partner lenders. Six of the firm’s nine mature vintages are currently top quartile, and Riverside’s investors include the world’s leading pension funds, endowments, funds-of-funds, insurance companies and banks.
Sage Holdings LLC is the leading transatlantic stakeholder management and financial communications firm. Formed in 2007 with private-equity backing from The Riverside Company, Sage companies include leading proxy solicitation company D.F. King (www.dfking.com) and Europe’s fastest growing financial communications firm M:Communications (www.mcomgroup.com). Sage Holdings employs over 900 professionals with offices in New York, London, Dubai, Munich and now Stockholm.
Hallvarsson & Halvarsson supports companies and organizations in creating value by developing communication services that provide understanding and build confidence. H&H works with strategic communication consultancy and production for both print and the web e.g. annual reports and corporate websites. H&H’s over 100 employees provide extensive experience and profound knowledge within areas such as financial communication, media, crisis management, investor relations, web consultancy, CSR and public affairs.