D’Ieteren’s second billion-dollar deal, now on Belron (Carglass)
On Friday, D’Ieteren announced that it is investing € 1,2 billion in forklift trucks specialist TVH Parts. On Monday, they made public that three new shareholders are coming on board at car glass repairer Belron, known for the Carglass brand, for an amount of € 2,2 billion.
The share transaction gives Belron an enterprise value of € 21 billion. This means that D’Ieteren’s share in the Carglass parent company is worth 8,6 billion euros – no less than 30% more than D’Ieteren’s full stock market value on Monday evening.
Still half of D’Ieteren Group
The three new shareholders are the American investment funds Hellman & Friedman, Blackrock (one of the world’s largest money management firms), and the Singaporean fund GIC. Together, they will take a stake of up to 13% in Belron (of which 9% for H&F).
D’Ieteren Group remains the majority shareholder (50,01%, coming from 54,8%) in Belron, while the stake of American Investment company Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R) is reduced to 24%. Management and the founder family Lubner hold the remaining 13%.
ADAS makes a difference for Belron
Belon specializes in the repair and replacement of automotive glass. The company, active in 40 countries, has almost 26 000 employees and posted sales of € 3,9 billion. Belron is one of the pillars of the D’Ieteren Group, alongside D’Ieteren Automotive (importer of the VW brands in Belgium), D’Ieteren Immo, and Moleskine, the Italian manufacturer of notebooks.
Cars nowadays are equipped with more and more driver assistance and safety systems, Advanced Driver Assistance Systems, or ADAS for short. Every time a car window is replaced, these sensors, radars, and cameras must be calibrated.
This requires specialist work and significant investments. However, according to the newspaper De Tijd, large players like Belron have enough scale to actively follow this technological market, one of the fastest-growing areas of automotive electronics. By 2022, all passenger cars must be equipped with a certain amount of ADAS systems.