Mergers and acquisitions: Who bought whom?

It would be no exaggeration to say that the industry went on a buying spree in 2017. Nearly every week, takeovers were announced, and agreements reached. The first six months of 2018 also saw acquisitions in the paints and coatings industry. Our overview shows takeovers and mergers at a glance.

Mergers and acquisitions: Who bought whom? Image source: Schlierner - Stock Adobe -
  Buyer Country Target Country Segment Remarks
Paints and coatings            
  Akzo Nobel The Netherlands V.Powdertech Co., Ltd. Thailand Powder coatings  
  Akzo Nobel The Netherlands Fabryo Romania Architectural coatings  
  Alpina Farben GmbH Germany Alfred Clouth Lackfabrik  Germany Wood coatings Alpina takes over the distribution of Clou's DIY business
  Hempel Denmark J.W. Ostendorf Germany Architectural coatings Hempel purchase 65 % of the German based Paint manufacturer, J. W. Ostendorf.
  Siegwerk Germany Tupahue Tintas Brazil Printing inks, coatings and solvents for flexo and gravure printing  
  Zorka Color Serbia Tikkurila Serbia Architectural coatings Tikkurila sells local site to local partner
  Zorka Color Republic of Macedonia Tikkurila Republic of Macedonia Architectural coatings Tikkurila sells local site to local partner
Raw materials            
  Alberdingk Boley Germany Synthomer Leuna GmbH Germany Binders  
  Astorg France IGM Resins The Netherlands Binders  
  Carlyle Group and GIC USA / Singapore Akzo Nobel Speciality Chemicals The Netherlands Diverse raw materials  
  Dominion Colour Corporation Canada Gemini Dispersions United Kingdom Dispersions DCC merges Gemini Dispersions Ltd into parent organization
  Kolb Distribution Switzerland Elementis Specialties Netherlands The Netherlands Diverse raw materials  
  Protech/Oxyplast Canada Chemionics Corporation USA  Specialty plastisol and latex formulations  
  Sabic Saudi-Arabien Clariant Switzerland Diverse raw materials Sabic acquires 25 % of the shares in Clariant
  Synthomer United Kingdom BASF (local site) Austria Styrene-butadiene-based paper dispersions Synthomer divests local production site
  Vink Chemicals Germany Prom Chem (biocides business) United Kingdom Biocides  
  H.B. Fuller USA Royal Adhesives & Sealants USA Adhesives  
Construction chemicals            
  Sika Switzerland Emseal Joint Systems USA Structural expansion joint products, adhesives and sealants  
  PPG USA ProCoatings The Netherlands Architectural coatings  
  Safic-Alcan UK United Kingdom Techform Fine Chemicals United Kingdom Diverse raw materials  
  Uzin Utz Germany Forinn bv The Netherlands Flooring systems  
  Uzin Utz Germany Bosgoed Groothandel bv The Netherlands Flooring systems  
Testing and measuring            
  Anton Paar Germany Quantachrome Instruments USA Measuring equipment  

Interview: “Without a doubt we will continue to see a significant number of bolt-on, safer acquisitions”

Grace Matthews offers transaction advisory services for manufacturers and distributors throughout the chemical and materials value chain. European Coatings spoke to managing director, Ben Scharff, about the recent level of activity regarding mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in the paint and coatings industry and his expectations for the rest of the year.

After the first six months in 2018, how do you rate the M&A activities in the paint and coatings sector in this year compared to last year?

Ben Scharff: Based on our internal tracking metrics, we see roughly the same level of activity in announced paints and coatings activity through the first five months of 2018 as we did for the same time period last year (36 vs. 34). Moving upstream though we have seen a marked increase in the number of announced resin and polymer transactions versus the prior year (38 in 2018 vs. 22 in the first 5 months of 2017). We anticipate that activity will remain strong for the balance of 2018 as most companies continue to perform well and valuations remain buoyed by the significant amount of capital available from both strategic and private equity to pursue transactions.

What development do you expect for the next six to 12 months regarding M&A activities in the paint and coatings sector, will there be more activity or has the situation cooled off?

Scharff: While we anticipate the number of transactions to remain fairly constant, we expect that they will occur at the large and small ends of the market. Due to the heavy and continuous consolidation in paint and coatings, we are starting to see a void emerge in the existence of middle market coatings manufacturers. Those between $50M and $500M are becoming less common. We see private equity chipping away at this and attempting to fill this void by executing on buy and build strategies with smaller, mainly industrial coatings companies.

The last mega deal was between Sherwin-Williams and Valspar. Do you expect any further deals of that scale or is it more likely to see more of the types of recent years such as bolt-on acquisitions?

BB_Ben Scharff_Grace_Matthews_June_2018.png

Ben Scharff

Managing director, Grace Matthews

Scharff: Without a doubt we will continue to see a significant number of bolt-on, safer acquisitions. Companies will do this to expand geographical presence, add technology or key customers, or even to onboard a new channel to market strategy. While these deals occur, there will continue to be chatter in the market regarding PPG, Akzo, Axalta, RPM and some of the large Asian coatings manufacturers. We expect that over the next 12-24 months we will see some combination of these companies. All are publicly traded, and all have extreme pressure to grow beyond the GDP growth rates of their respective end markets.

To what extent will private equity firms play a bigger role in M&A activities in the paint and coatings industry?

Scharff: We continue to see increasingly strong interest from private equity across the paint coatings value chain. In the past year, we have seen raw material suppliers, coatings manufacturers as well as distributors serving this space. In each instance we have witnessed private equity being very aggressive regarding timing, terms and valuation. Paint and coatings remains an attractive end market to execute a roll-up strategy. As such, we will continue to see private equity aggressively participate in this sector.

The complete article can be found in the July/August issue of the European Coatings Journal, which is also available online in European Coatings 360°.

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