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Antares Vision acquires FT System

Antares Vision is continuing its diversification strategy in the beverage industry with the acquisition of FT System (bottling control and inspection systems). The agreement also marks the start of an industrial partnership with Arol SpA.

Travagliato (BS), 30 September 2019. Antares Vision has taken a further step forward in its strategic business diversification strategy by finalising an agreement to acquire 100% of FT System Srl, an Italian company based in Alseno (Piacenza) and a leader in control and inspection in the beverage industry operating in the domestic and international markets.

The agreement was signed by Antares Vision and the shareholders of FT System: the company Arol SpA (80% stake), Fabio Forestelli (10%) and Ferdinando Tuberti (10%). The sale of the company’s shares was also finalised. The equity value of FT System is €67.7 million. With this acquisition, Antares Vision gains control of FT System and indirectly of its subsidiaries in France and the United States and the business conducted by the divisions operating in Mexico, Brazil, UK, Spain, China and India.

Founded in 1998, FT System is a market leader in bottling control and inspection. It operates prevalently in the beverage industry and covers all process stages: container control, filling, capping, leak and pressure testing, labelling, coding, weighing and palletisation.

Its customer portfolio consists of more than 2,000 companies across 60 countries with approximately 5,200 installed machines, including large multinational producers of water, soft drinks, spirits, beer and wine and OEMs (bottling line producers and integrators). The company has around 140 employees. FT System has focused its growth strategy on investments in innovative and patented technologies such as ROBO QCS, a non-destructive and fully-automated quality control station integrated into the production line.

In the period 1 January - 31 December 2019, FT System is expected to post revenue of more than €26 million (including around €18 million generated outside Italy), an EBITDA of €6.0 million and an EBIT of €5.7 million. At the date of closing, FT System registered a net financial position (cash) of around €8 million.

The acquisition of FT System is part of Antares Vision’s industrial diversification strategy and reflects the Group’s mission to protect the product over its entire life cycle.
The acquisition of FT System will enable Antares Vision to:
- expand its product portfolio in the beverage industry thanks to the company’s know-how and expertise;
- further extend its geographical presence by acquiring businesses in new markets (Mexico, China, UK and Spain), as well as in the USA, France, Brazil and India where Antares Vision already has a presence);
- increase market penetration by exploiting the company’s established customer base and sales force;
- develop cross selling by integrating tracking and intelligent data management solutions.

An industrial partnership is formed. As part of the acquisition of Antares Vision, FT System and Arol have also signed an agreement aimed at establishing a partnership, with the primary objective of gaining a competitive advantage in the market thanks to a complete range of offerings: control and inspection to meet quality standards; product traceability along the supply chain for guaranteed transparency; intelligent production data management for maximised efficiency. Fabio Forestelli and Ferdinando Tuberti will continue to work at FT System as administrators, ensuring continuity of company management and supporting the development project behind the agreement with Antares Vision. “The agreement with FT System will enable us to launch a development project in the beverage industry that is unique in terms of the breadth and quality of the offerings and geographical range,” said Emidio Zorzella, CEO of Antares Vision. “Our industry diversification strategy is also based on identifying partners like FT System who combine solid know-how, experience and capacity for technological innovation.” Fabio Forestelli, CEO of FT System, said: “In Antares Vision we have found the ideal qualities for boosting our growth. I’m certain that together we will be able to harness our potential and gain a solid competitive advantage in the beverage industry in Italy and abroad.”

Antares Vision was assisted in the acquisition operation by Mediobanca (Financial Advisor), Orsingher Ortu (Legal Advisor), NCTM (Fiscal Due Diligence) and New Deal Advisors (Financial Due Diligence).