Adenia buys electrical products distributor in debut South Africa deal

 Adenia buys electrical products distributor in debut South Africa deal

Adenia Partners, a private equity firm in Africa, has struck its third deal of the year with the purchase of a majority stake in Herholdt’s, a distributor of low-voltage electrical products and solar products in South Africa.

This is the PE firm’s second deal this month alone and the first transaction in South Africa.

The firm didn’t disclose the deal value amount but it is believed to invest €5-25 million in a single company.

Herholdt’s was established in 1964 and operates in Bloemfontein, Kimberley and George cities. It has recently opened branches in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

Led by Heine Herholdt, the company has a product portfolio of more than 10,000 items that it supplies to professionals such as installers, contractors and resellers as well as end-users.

Herholdt’s originally focused on the sale of electrical equipment such as cabling, switches and sockets, as well as lighting. Three years ago, it diversified into the distribution of solar systems, a market experiencing rapid growth on the back of increasing product affordability and difficulties faced by the national power grid system.

Adenia said it will work together with Herholdt’s to strengthen its leadership position in the solar market through new store openings, partnerships with key promoters, digitalization, as well as potential acquisitions.

Florent de Boissieu, partner at Adenia who leads its practice in South Africa, said Herholdt’s is a fast-growing business with “an impressive” corporate culture. “As a responsible investor, we were particularly attracted by the potential for high contribution to the SDGs [sustainable development goals], and specifically to improve access to reliable and affordable energy.”

The PE firm opened its office in South Africa early this year.

Andrew Bahlmann and Nicolas Souvaris from management consultancy Deal Leaders International intermediated as advisors in the transaction.

This is the second control deal by Adenia Partners this month and the third transaction since January. Earlier this month, it said it was acquiring Africa Biosystems Ltd, a distributor of life sciences and clinical diagnostics equipment in East Africa.

ABL is headquartered in Kenya and has offices in Uganda and Tanzania. Its instruments are used to conduct research and diagnosis across the animal, human and crop sectors with product applications that span molecular, cell and protein biology and DNA forensics.

Earlier this year, it joined hands with Africa Infrastructure Investment Managers and International Finance Corporation to back two former executives at Eaton Towers, which was acquired by American Tower Corp a year ago, to create a new telecom tower venture.

Founded in 2002, Adenia has raised $500 million across four funds. It has executed 27 investments and realised 16 of them.

Vivek Sinha

The Capital Quest