According to the strategic plan, AF Eigenkapitalfonds für deutschen Mittelstand GmbH & Co. KG has sold its investment in Munich-based Avantgarde Gesellschaft für Kommunikation mbH after a successful expansion course. In a buy-out transaction, funds advised by EMH Partners acquire all shares held by Afinum in Avantgarde and additional shares from the management team, which remains at the helm of the company with a significant minority stake in the business.
Providing growth capital, Afinum had invested in Avantgarde back in August 2015 in order to strengthen the capital base of the leading German brand experience agency, aiming at the growth of digital business, the development of new industry verticals and the expansion of the HR staffing unit Avantgarde Experts & Talents, specializing on marketing, communication and sales positions. In addition to successfully achieving these goals, Afinum’s portfolio phase also saw the establishment of the “Retail-as-a-Service” business segment, in which modern sales concepts focussing on brand experiences are not only conceptually developed, but also being operated in long-term contractual relationships for a wide variety of consumer goods customers. In the four years of the Afinum participation, revenues of the Avantgarde
Group increased by almost 40%, while operating result tripled.
Martin Schnaack, founder and CEO of Avantgarde, comments: “In retrospect, Afinum’s entry four years ago was exactly the right thing for Avantgarde: With Afinum’s support, we were able to position ourselves in a much more focused manner in the market, to professionalize our organization in many areas and to dedicate ourselves to sustainable and profitable growth. Over four years, the Afinum team has always been a responsive and valuable sparring partner for us on operational as well as strategic issues, and has greatly accompanied our transformation from an owner-managed agency to the European Brand Experience Champion. We are now looking forward to working with the EMH team to further drive the development of Avantgarde, to tap into new sales potentials and to expand our market leadership”.
Against the background of the positive development of the company, the medium-term investment of AF Eigenkapitalfonds für deutschen Mittelstand GmbH & Co. KG in
Avantgarde was very successful, both strategically and economically.