Clayton, Dubilier & Rice today announced an agreement under which Mobilux, the holding company of BUT, a CD&R portfolio company, will acquire Conforama France, a subsidiary of Steinhoff International, to create the largest omnichannel furniture retail group in France. After the transaction close, BUT and Conforama France will continue to operate as independent entities under common ownership.
Conforama France is a leading home equipment retailer of furniture, decoration, and a range of homeware appliances and electronic goods. The combination with BUT creates an omnichannel “champion” in the French home furnishings market that will be #1 by revenue, underpinned by strong brands, a broad network, competitive product positioning and a compelling customer value proposition. Together, the two highly complementary businesses operate nearly 500 stores. The combination will allow management to leverage the combined strengths and geographic coverage of each business and reinforce leadership in core furniture categories and broader home equipment products.
The transaction further extends CD&R’s strategic partnership with WM Holding, an affiliate of XXXLutz, the second largest furniture retailer in Europe, who together with CD&R funds currently own BUT in a 50-50 partnership. Sir Terry Leahy, a CD&R Senior Advisor and the former CEO of Tesco plc, will chair the company.
“We look forward to working with our partner WM Holding as well as the BUT and Conforama management teams under this new common ownership structure, which we believe will accelerate the profitable growth of both companies,” said Sir Terry.
“The French consumer and retail market is very important to CD&R and this transaction provides an opportunity for us to bring our operating expertise and capital to bear to support a French Champion and provide compelling benefits to all stakeholders” said CD&R Partner Greg Lai.
“This partnership transaction further grows our consumer and retail franchise in Europe, and aligns with CD&R’s strategy of providing solution capital and operational value to support corporate transformations,” said CD&R Partner Marco Herbst.
Over the last decade, CD&R has committed more than $10 billion to nearly 30 solution capital transactions, often in partnership structures, including the recently announced £85 million PIPE investment in SIG plc, a leading European supplier of specialist building materials. This PIPE investment was the first of its kind in Europe in over a decade.
Clayton, Dubilier & Rice is a private investment firm with a strategy predicated on building stronger, more profitable businesses. Since inception, CD&R has managed the investment of $30 billion in 90 businesses representing a broad range of industries with an aggregate transaction value of approximately $140 billion. The Firm has offices in New York and London. CD&R has been investing in Europe for more than 20 years, acquiring 18 businesses representing more than $6 billion of capital. For more information, please visit www.cdr-inc.com.
About Conforama France
Founded in 1967, Conforama operates an extensive network across Europe. The Conforama group pioneered mass furniture retailing in France was then later acquired by Steinhoff International Holdings Ltd. in 2011. Its core product lines are furniture, decoration, and a range of homeware appliances and electronic goods, employing a multi-style product strategy. With revenue of €1.8 billion and a network of 162 owned stores, Conforama’s French business is the #3 home furniture retailer in the country. For more information, please visit https://www.conforama.fr/.
Founded in 1972, BUT has grown to become the home equipment retailer with the largest store network in France, offering a comprehensive selection of furniture, decoration and appliances. With 309 stores, the company maintains the second largest position in terms of furniture market share in the country. For more information, please visit https://www.but.fr/.