Axieo acquires Nuplex’s Specialties and Masterbatch businesses


Axieo Pty Ltd, a CHAMP Private Equity-backed company, has struck a A$127.5 million deal to acquire Nuplex’s Specialties and Masterbatch businesses.

Image credit: flickr user: Exposantennetwerk
Image credit: flickr user: Exposantennetwerk

Nuplex’s Specialities business imports products that are used as ingredients by renowned food manufacturers such as Goodman Fielder, Mondelez, Fonterra, Nestle, as well as, ingredients used for manufacturing vitamins, sunscreens and generic medicines. It also provides a broad range of raw materials used for paint production and cleaning chemicals.

The Masterbatch business manufactures and supplies colourants and functional additives that ensure everyday plastics are food safe, UV resistant and fire retardant. Its products are key ingredients in food packaging, plastic bottles, synthetic grass, stadium seating, water tanks, and high performance pipes for coal seam gas industry.

Axieo’s inaugural CEO Sam Bastouna – who has a vast experience in the chemicals, plastics and food ingredients sectors across Australia, New Zealand and Asia – thanked CHAMP Private Equity on their support and said Axieo was fully committed to developing the business in Australia and New Zealand.

“We are delighted to be acquiring this strong and sustainable business that is relied on by world-class manufacturers in Australia and New Zealand for essential inputs. We are committed to maintaining manufacturing operations in Australia, New Zealand and Vietnam. With the support of CHAMP Private Equity we are well positioned to take these businesses to a new level by improving performance and investing in growth opportunities,” Mr Bastouna said.

“We intend to continue the culture of exceptional customer service, which is relationship-driven, and support it with new processes and systems which will ensure that we can respond more quickly to our partners’ changing needs.”

Cameron Buchanan, Managing Director of CHAMP Private Equity said the acquisition of Nuplex’s Specialties and Masterbatch businesses continued CHAMP’s long history of acquiring non-core divisions of larger Corporates and creating successful stand-alone businesses.

“We have developed a clear plan to invest in the business to drive organic growth and industry consolidation as well as expanding further into Asia using our world class facility in Vietnam as a springboard,” he said.

Nuplex Chairman Peter Springford told that while both businesses had delivered attractive returns in the past, they were “none-core” to Nuplex’s global strategy.

“When the offer was received from Champ, we undertook a careful evaluation of the medium term outlook for both businesses, and in the context of Nuplex’s strategy, we assessed the return they could deliver shareholders as part of our portfolio relative to the offer price,” Springford said.

“Following this review, the board concluded that the negotiated price was an attractive one and the offer was in the best long-term interests of shareholders and the company.”

The change in ownership is scheduled for 30 November 2014, with a number of new jobs to be created in a corporate head office in Melbourne.