The acquisition of Antalis by Kokusai Pulp & Paper has been completed, leaving Europe’s largest paper merchant as a subsidiary of the Japanese paper giant.
KPP now owns 83.7% of the Antalis shares and has implemented a measure to secure the transfer of the remaining shares. The new owner has also refinanced €100 million of outstanding debt though a new facility with Mizuho Bank and reached agreement with former lenders to write off the remaining amount. An intra company loan from KPP will provide a further €80 million and access to potential lending from other Japanese banks.
This will allow Antalis to “pursue its strategic development through internal and external growth”.
Hervé Poncin, who remains CEO, welcomes the deal saying that it “will enable Antalis to write a new page in its international development by benefitting from new resources to strengthen its positions in its various markets and ensure its development. It opens new opportunity for its clients and suppliers with a world class business partner.”
He is joined on the board by Madoka Tanabe, who becomes chairman, with Yasujuki Sakata and Shojiro Adachi filling director positions on the board. Pascal Lebard has stepped down as chairman along with fellow directors Mdme Cécile Helme-Guizon and Bruno Basuyaux.
An immediate investment is redevelopment of offices at a warehouse in Coalville “which are no longer considered fit for purpose due to the age of the building and the extent of the refurbishment work therefore required.” This will double the office accommodation available on the site, which has housed large format materials rather than at the main warehouse a few hundred metres away.
The completion of the deal means that the UK's three largest paper merchants have all changed hands in the last year, Denmaur having been acquired by a pair of US industry veterans, Harry Gould Jnr and Robert Gould, and Premier Paper being taken over by Japan Pulp and Paper, which had previously acquired the Gould’s paper business.
Antalis, the largest paper merchant in Europe, is now part of one of the largest paper merchanting and manufacturing businesses around the globe. KPP is also a leader in paper recycling and a strong believer in closed loop production.