Dear friends and business partners of Afinum,
The past year with the Covid-19 pandemic was an extraordinary year for everyone and thus also for our team and portfolio companies.
Against this backdrop, Afinum looks back with great gratitude to an overall extremely challenging and successful year 2020 with particularly valuable experiences. Our portfolio companies were able to succeed in their relevant markets, and overall demonstrated exceptional crisis resilience. We consider this the result not only of our selection criteria for new investments, but also of the outstanding work of the respective management teams, the consistent implementation of clearly defined measures, and a balanced debt financing structure.
Over the past 12 months, the current portfolio was expanded by three additional platform investments: After the investment in the secure messenger service Threema in Switzerland, additional investments were also made in Germany with Listan, an internationally growing B2C business in the field of high-performance gaming equipment, and at the beginning of this year with SanderStrothmann Group, a leading full-service partner for product development in the fast-growing market for cosmetics, beauty and healthcare products. All investments were majority acquisitions from the company founders, either as part of a succession plan or in a partnership for the joint implementation of a growth strategy.
With three add-ons, we were also able to strategically develop our holdings in Garz & Fricke, All4Golf and LIFTKET. Particularly impactful was the acquisition of Clubhouse Golf in the UK in the context of our investment in All4Golf, which led to the creation of the pan-European market leader for e-commerce golf equipment, the “Perfect Drive Sports Group”.
Following the successful divestment of our stake in Meridian Spa & Fitness to the international fitness conglomerate David Lloyds Leisure at the beginning of 2020, an investor specialized in secondary transactions acquired the remaining holdings of the fully invested 2010 growth fund in September 2020.
The current buy-out fund Afinum 8 with a volume of 410 Mio. EUR is already in an advanced investment phase. As of end 2020, the fund’s value continued to grow against the previous year and the outlook for 2021 is very positive backed by strong operating performance of its portfolio companies. The current fund has sufficient capital for add-ons and at least one additional platform transaction.
Going forward, the targeted transaction size for platform transactions is around 40 to 150 Mio. EUR, with equity investments of around 25 to 75 Mio. EUR and a sweet spot of around 30 to 35 Mio. EUR. The team intends to maintain its investment focus on the mid-market segment with only slightly increased transaction sizes. The focus remains primarily on succession solutions and growth partnerships, but also includes carve-outs, as it was recently the case with the Ledlenser investment. Attractive minority investments will also be analyzed selectively. While Afinum maintains its sector-agnostic investment approach, the Software/Tech, Healthcare, Industrials and Consumer/Food sectors, in which the team has already gained extensive experience through current and past investments, will be covered systematically by parts of the investment team, further deepening our sector expertise.
In line with the steady growth and with regards to a future-oriented team structure, four new associates joined Afinum over the past 12 months. Janine Schäfer and Marc Schuster already started at the beginning of 2020. At the beginning of this year, Karsten Fischer and Manuel Arnet also joined the team. In addition, partners Kai Roolf and Burkhard v. Wangenheim were appointed to the Afinum Investment Committee.