Rivulis and Eurodrip Announce Merger to Create a World Leader in Micro IrrigationPUNE, India, January 11, 2017/PRNewswire/ -
Rivulis Irrigation Ltd. of Israel and Eurodrip S.A. of Greece announced today that the two companies have entered into a definitive merger agreement in an all-share transaction, creating a global leader in micro irrigation. Transaction closing is subject to satisfaction of certain conditions including, but not limited to, regulatory approvals. The merged company will have unparalleled market coverage with 18 factories around the world and 1,800 employees across 5 continents and 30 countries. Growers around the world will benefit from an extensive product and solution offering, consisting of trusted industry brands such as T-Tape™, Ro-Drip™, Hydrogol™, D5000, Eolos™, Compact™, PC2™ and Olympos™. The merged company will be headquartered in Gvat, Israel and will be named Rivulis Irrigation, Ltd. Richard Klapholz, the current CEO of Rivulis Irrigation, will lead the merged company.
All current shareholders of the two companies - FIMI Opportunity Funds, Israel's leading private equity fund (FIMI), U.S. based Paine & Partners, LLC (Paine & Partners) and Dhanna Engineering Private Limited (DEL) - a company of the Abhay Firodia family of India will remain shareholders of the merged company and will remain active on the Board of Directors, ensuring continuity and providing strong support for the success of the merged company. FIMI will maintain a majority stake and Gillon Beck, the current Chairman of Rivulis Irrigation and Senior Partner at FIMI, will serve as the Chairman of the merged entity. Mr. Sudhir Mehta, Chairman of Pinnacle Industries and DEL's Director on the Board, will continue to serve as Director on the Board of the merged entity.
Richard Klapholz, Rivulis Irrigation CEO, commented on the merger, "We are thrilled to have these two leading companies join forces to better serve the growing needs of the irrigation markets around the world. While benefitting from significant operational economies of scale, we will ensure that all commitments to our distribution business partners are maintained and further strengthened. Our goal is to ensure that our business partners will continue to be successful with the products and solutions of both companies - but now with a wider offering and stronger manufacturing base. I am looking forward to working closely with the Eurodrip teams around the world and I am certain that we will all benefit from their vast experience and their continued commitment and dedication."
Peter Berweger, Eurodrip Group CEO, added, "It has been a great honour for me to lead the Eurodrip Group over the past years and into this merger. With this transaction, we bring together two excellent micro irrigation businesses with complementary capabilities, and we are offering growers more choice and a wider product range to save water and enhance yield. The combined entity will have a truly global presence in all relevant irrigation markets, enabling strategic global growth and innovation that will benefit all stakeholders."
Sudhir Mehta, Chairman of Pinnacle Industries and DEL's Director on the Board of the merged entity, commented, "As big believers in the advancement of new irrigation technologies on the global scene in general and in India in particular, we invested in Rivulis Irrigation in late 2015. In the last year and a half, we have co-worked very closely with the Rivulis Irrigation management to establish the company among the top 5 micro-irrigation suppliers in India in a 3 to 5 year timeframe. Now, as a strengthened player in that arena, we believe that this will influence the company's growth in India in a very positive way so that the targets can be achieved even in a shorter time. We are truly thrilled by this new development which we have supported all along. We are confident that the merged company will remain strongly committed to its mission of providing continuous innovation, and strong service to help growers to optimize yields sustainably and economically while addressing water and land scarcity."
David Buckeridge, Eurodrip Chairman and Partner at Paine & Partners, said, "This merger reflects our continued belief in the potential for improving agricultural productivity around the globe. It has been a sincere pleasure to see how both companies share the same commitment to leading the transformation and development of drip irrigation globally. Paine & Partners remains fully committed to the success of the merged company and is excited to partner with FIMI to support that success."
Gillon Beck, the merged company's chairman, summarized, "The Rivulis management team has proven its turnaround skills in an astounding manner in the last two and a half years. Strengthened by the talent of the Eurodrip management, employees and owners, the joint team can now focus on a different type of development: merging the two companies into one efficient, market oriented, innovative and profitable global entity. With the help and long-time experience of our co-owners, I am confident in the company's success in this new phase and in its ability to assume a leadership role in the industry."
About Rivulis Irrigation:
Rivulis Irrigation is one of the leading drip and micro irrigation manufacturers worldwide. With 1,100 employees and 11 factories in 25 countries, and a global distribution network of well over 1,500 dealers and OEM partners, Rivulis Irrigation is a major player impacting the growing move of agriculture to drip irrigation. Rivulis Irrigation was established in June 2014, when FIMI acquired the former John Deere Water division from John Deere. The Fund, together with the current management of the company and its employees, succeeded in turning the company around in an exceptionally short time, effectively leveraging the 5 decade-long expertise of the original founding companies (Plastro, T-Systems and Roberts Irrigation).
About the Abhay Firodia family:
The Abhay Firodia family is a well-known and highly respected family in India, holding controlling interests in Force Motors Limited (Force Motors). Force Motors has been in operation for the last 60 years, and is considered a pioneer of the automobile industry in India. Having, in its past, manufactured well known Indian brands like the Tempo 3-Wheeler Auto rickshaws and the Matador, Force Motors currently markets the iconic Traveller vehicle, the leading van in India, as well as the Balwan and Orchard range of agricultural tractors. The Abhay Firodia Group, with its 10,000 employees and 10 plants in India has remained focused on producing utilitarian cost effective products, especially made to suit the Indian economy and the rural environment.
Eurodrip S.A., established in 1979, through its subsidiaries, manufactures and supplies integrated drip irrigation solutions for agricultural and landscaping applications. Its products include integrated drip line solutions, flat and round drippers, blank tubes and other irrigation products. Eurodrip has a market presence in over 70 countries, with operating subsidiaries in the U.S., Turkey, Greece, Egypt, Jordan, Peru, Mexico and Chile, and employs more than 700 people worldwide. In 2013, Eurodrip was acquired by Paine & Partners LLC, a value-driven private equity firm that focuses on complex investment opportunities in the fast-growing, dynamic global food and agribusiness sectors.
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