Sunday 4 December 2016

Eurazeo agrees €335m deal to take on 90pc of Fintrax

James Regan and Gavin McLoughlin

Published 24/11/2015 | 02:30

Eurazeo will pay €300m, based on an enterprise value of €550m, with a further €35m payable based upon 2016 performance
Eurazeo will pay €300m, based on an enterprise value of €550m, with a further €35m payable based upon 2016 performance

French investment firm Eurazeo said yesterday that it plans to pay up to €335m to buy 90pc of Irish group Fintrax, a provider of VAT refunds for tourists.

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Eurazeo will pay €300m, based on an enterprise value of €550m, with a further €35m payable based upon 2016 performance, Eurazeo said. Closing is expected to before year-end.

"We are convinced that our experience in the luxury retail, and travel and leisure sectors, as well as our international network, notably in China and Brazil, will be major assets in the acceleration of the development of the company," Eurazeo managing director Marc Frappier said. Fintrax management will retain the remaining 10pc of the company, Eurazeo added.

The company, set up in the 1980s by Gerry Barry, was acquired by UK private equity firm Exponent in 2012 for €170m in what was thought to be the biggest ever deal for a Gaeltacht-based company.

Mr Barry left the company thereafter.

Exponent saw off rival offers from interested parties in Asia, Europe and the United States. Fintrax's headquarters are in Ballinahown. Reports over the weekend had suggested that the deal would be announced today.

It follows recent high-profile Exponent exits from the Quorn food brand and rail ticket company Trainline.

Fintrax's chief executive is Patrick Waldron, previously chief operating officer of Bank of Ireland retail. Mr Waldron said he and his team were pleased to have Eurazeo as a new shareholder.

"It is the ideal partner for us in our next stage of development, we will continue with enthusiasm to build a major player in international payment services," he said. (Reuters)

Irish Independent

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