3i Infrastructure plc (LON: 3IN) has agreed to invest c. €220m to acquire up to 100% of Ionisos, a leading owner and operator of cold sterilisation facilities servicing the medical, pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries, from Ardian Expansion. Completion is expected to take place in September.
Established in 1993 in Civrieux, France, Ionisos is the third largest cold sterilisation provider globally and operates a network of 11 facilities in Europe with market leading positions in France and Spain. It has over 200 employees and a highly diversified customer base of more than 1,000 customers. Ionisos delivers a mission-critical service for the medical, pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries for whom cold sterilisation is an essential component of the manufacturing process. It is typically applied to single use products that would be damaged by the heat and/or humidity of hot sterilisation methods.
Demand for sterilisation is driven by attractive market fundamentals and non-cyclical market factors, including an ageing population in Western Europe, growing demand for medical services increasingly relying on single use products, and increasingly stringent regulation governing the sterilisation of medical, pharmaceutical and cosmetics products.
Richard Laing, Chair of 3i Infrastructure, commented:
“Ionisos represents a great opportunity for 3i Infrastructure to diversify its sector exposure and increase its presence in the French market. It is a resilient business providing essential infrastructure to sectors with attractive long-term fundamentals.”
Phil White, Managing Partner and Head of Infrastructure, 3i Investments plc, Investment Manager of 3i Infrastructure, added: “Ionisos is a defensive business which has grown organically and through bolt-on M&A. We look forward to working with the management team to continue its strong track record of providing market-leading services while growing its presence across Europe.”
Christoph Herkens, CEO of Ionisos said:
“3i Infrastructure has a strong international team and network which we feel will be of great support as we accelerate our growth through acquisition, organic growth and further development of our business across Europe. Its permanent capital and long-term perspective make it an attractive partner.”