Houlihan Lokey Advises Millbo & BioNaturals

Houlihan Lokey is pleased to announce the sale of Millbo to Ergon Capital (Ergon) and, simultaneously, the acquisition of BioNaturals International LLC (BioNaturals) by Millbo. Through the combination of Millbo and BioNaturals, Ergon will create a global leader in the natural functional ingredients space for bread and bakery products, exploiting several synergies arising from the integration. These transactions closed on 16 December 2020.

Founded in 1991 and headquartered in Trecate, Piedmont, Italy, Millbo is a leading player in the ingredients industry specialising in supplying functional natural ingredients for the bread and bakery industry. Its product offering includes innovative and technologically advanced solutions to replace chemical ingredients with natural ones for the preservation, flavor, taste, and nutritional value enhancement of bread and bakery products. As a key supplier of BioNaturals and other European industrial bakeries and distributors, Millbo leverages on one production facility located in northern Italy and more than 20 employees.

Founded in 2003 and headquartered in Virginia, BioNaturals is a leading specialist in natural multifunctional ingredients aiming at increasing the shelf life of bread and bakery products. Its product offering includes natural preservatives used as substitutes for propionates as well as sorbates. BioNaturals has blending and logistic activities outsourced as well as a total workforce of approximately 10 people.

Ergon Capital is a middle-market private equity investment company with more than €1.0 billion of assets under management. Since its inception in 2005, over successive investment programs, Ergon has raised approximately €2 billion, invested in 29 companies, and completed approximately 60 add-on acquisitions for a total aggregate transaction value of more than €4.5 billion.

Apollo and OLB provided the financing through a unitranche debt facility denominated in US dollars and an amortising debt facility denominated in euros, respectively. Goldman Sachs provided an FX USD/EUR swap in the context of the transaction.

Houlihan Lokey acted as the sole financial advisor to the shareholders of Millbo in its disposal to Ergon as well as the shareholders of BioNaturals in its disposal to Millbo. These transactions demonstrate Houlihan Lokey’s long-standing track record of delivering exceptional outcomes for its clients and the continued success of the firm’s Consumer, Food & Retail Group.


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