Prague, April 8, 2013 – Unilever Czech Republic and the Bochemie company announced today that they have signed an agreement under which Unilever will acquire the SAVO and other consumer brands from Bochemie.
The transaction includes transfer of the related trademarks, other intellectual property and a small number of employees. The acquired brands will continue to be manufactured under contact by Bochemie at their Bohumín facility. The acquisition is subject to regulatory approval by the relevant competition authorities.
As Unilever aims to double its business whilst reducing environmental impact, it is continuously looking for growth opportunities and to further build its portfolio. Currently the SAVO brand includes a whole range of household cleaning products and disinfectants, so this acquisition will widen Unilever’s product portfolio in order to serve all consumers with their specific needs.
Unilever will buy SAVO, Biolit, Diffusil and other brands by acquisition of 100% of shares of Bochemie’s subsidiary HomeBrands, a.s. The transaction does not concern Bochemies activities relating to specialty chemicals, which will continue without changes. Bochemie will also continue manufacturing SAVO products in its Bohumín facility based on a contract manufacturing agreement.
"Unilever is constantly investing in building its brands and looking for new market opportunities. This is a valuable acquisition for us, having well known brands and a well-established position in the market. These brands will benefit from Unilever’s marketing strengths and resources," said Florin Trandafirescu, General Manager Unilever Czech and Slovak Republic.
"We view the transaction as recognition of the long term successful work of Bochemie employees in building strong local brands. We are convinced that Unilever will build on those efforts and further expand the brands it is buying from us both locally and internationally," commented Bochemie CEO Miloslav Vodička. "Bochemie will now focus on further development of its specialty chemical business," he added.
All acquired brands will continue to be available on the Czech and Slovak market as well as in Hungary, Romania, and other Central and Eastern European markets.
About SAVO brand
SAVO brand was introduced to the market of former Czechoslovakia as early as in 1973. Currently the brand includes a whole range of household cleaning products and disinfectants. It consists of branded products both on the hypochlorite basis being used by households for general disinfection purposes and mildew removal, as well as hypochlorite free specialised cleaning products for kitchen, bathroom and other specific needs.
About Bochemie Group
Bochemie Group is one of the leading manufacturers and suppliers of branded household care products in Central Europe. Its key brands include SAVO, Biolit and Diffusil, which all enjoys a strong market position particularly in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
The Group is also a global supplier of high value added specialty chemicals, including disinfectants, wood protection fungicides, metal surface treatment chemicals and accumulator masses.
The Group and its parent company Bochemie, a.s. have been headquartered in Bohumín, Czech Republic, where it employs over 450 people. The Group further includes EVM, the Hungarian manufacturer of branded household care products and subsidiaries in Slovakia, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria and Russia. The Group’s total number of employees is almost 600.
The Group is owned by the private equity firms Benson Oak Capital and Arx Equity Partners.
This announcement may contain forward-looking statements, including 'forward-looking statements' within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Words such as 'will', 'aim', 'expects', 'anticipates', 'intends', 'believes', 'vision', or the negative of these terms and other similar expressions of future performance or results, and their negatives, are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based upon current expectations and assumptions regarding anticipated developments and other factors affecting the Group. They are not historical facts, nor are they guarantees of future performance.
Because these forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, there are important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Among other risks and uncertainties, the material or principal factors which could cause actual results to differ materially are; Unilever's global brands not meeting consumer preferences; increasing competitive pressures; Unilever's investment choices in its portfolio management; finding sustainable solutions to support long-term growth; customer relationships; the recruitment and retention of talented employees; disruptions in our supply chain; the cost of raw materials and commodities; secure and reliable IT infrastructure; successful execution of acquisitions, divestitures and business transformation projects; economic and political risks and national disasters; the sovereign debt crisis in Europe; financial risks; and failure to meet high product safety and ethical standards; managing regulatory, tax and legal matters. Further details of potential risks and uncertainties affecting the Group are described in the Group's filings with the London Stock Exchange, Euronext Amsterdam and the US Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Group's Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended 31 December 2011 and the Annual Report and Accounts 2011. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this announcement. Except as required by any applicable law or regulation, the Group expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect any change in the Group's expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.