Milestone completes the acquisition of leading French household brands from Reckitt-Benckiser (“You & Home SAS”)

Milestone Investisseurs (“Milestone”), the Luxembourg-based private equity firm, is pleased to announce that it has successfully completed the acquisition of three leading French household brands, Maison Verte (‘environmentally aware’ laundry care), O’Cédar (wood care) and Baranne (shoe care) from Reckitt-Benckiser, the European healthcare, household and hygiene consumer goods group, for an undisclosed consideration. A new French company, “You & Home SAS”, has been created to acquire the assets.

Further to the successful Cadum-Iba investment in personal and household care, Milestone has been looking for other potential brands to rejuvenate and develop in France. Milestone has been working with Reckitt-Benckiser since October 2013 on this transaction. Baranne and O’Cédar are iconic French brands with a 100-year and 60-year history respectively, both leaders in their respective markets in the mass retail sales channel in France, while Maison Verte is a pioneer brand in the ‘environmentally aware’ household market with a strong brand awareness in France. Milestone provided circa EUR29m of equity and mezzanine funding and Crédit Lyonnais, Société Générale and Banque Populaire provided senior debt facilities for an un-disclosed amount. Milestone has become the majority shareholder of the newly created company “You & Home”.

You & Home is led by a highly experienced management team who shall be formally disclosed and announced in January 2015 and including a number of ex-Cadum executives. Jacques Deret, the former non-executive Chairman of Cadum International SA and Operating Partner at
Milestone, has been appointed non-executive chairman of the new group. Jacques Deret, Non-Executive Chairman of You & Home said: « You & Home becomes the new home for French household brands with un-tapped potential and who have been neglected by large groups over the years. In fact, these three well known family brands have remained very closed to the French consumers over the years. Those brands are well distributed in mass market trade, with fair or high market shares in their respective segments. They represent a great opportunity for the new management team to rejuvenate, extend and better support them to regain growth, create new values and benefits for all stake holders and new generations of consumers».

Olivier Antomarchi, Partner of Milestone commented: « This opportunity is the conclusion of a one-year long relationship with Reckitt-Benckiser to build a portfolio of famous sleeping assets with strong brand equity. It demonstrates Milestone’s ability to work in partnership with large corporates, building trust over time and delivering on our commitments. We are delighted to back a very experienced management team including members of the Cadum team».

About Reckitt-Benckiser

Reckitt-Benckiser is one of the largest players in the healthcare, household and hygiene consumer goods in Europe, which generated EUR12.3 billion of revenues in LTM June 2014. It manufactures and sells healthcare, hygiene and home care products worldwide and is listed on the London Stock Exchange.

About Milestone

Milestone is a Luxembourg–based private equity firm, owned by its two partners, Erick Rinner and Olivier Antomarchi, which invests in European French speaking countries in Switzerland, France, Belgium and Luxembourg.
Milestone operates on the lower mid-market, between EUR20m and EUR120m enterprise value, with an equity investment between EUR15m and EUR50m per transaction. Milestone only takes majority ownership positions, and supports its investee companies’ growth strategy in Europe, notably with the exclusive support of four highly experienced operating partners, with whom Milestone accumulated more than 45 years of experience.

You & Home is the ninth investment of the investment team. In the branded consumer goods sector, Milestone notably acquired and successfully developed Cadum-IBA before selling it to L’Oréal in 2012, generating a c.6.0x return. Milestone Investisseurs is a member of SECA. The Milestone team consists of three investment professionals and four operating partners based in Paris, Geneva, Brussels and London. Since 2007, Milestone has been one of the pioneers in Europe to develop single-deal fund structures, now very popular with sophisticated limited partners in Europe and in the US.

The information contained within this announcement is for informational purposes only and is not a solicitation or offer to invest within Milestone’s investee company.

You & Home’s deal team:

Milestone: Olivier Antomarchi, Claire Gomard, Jacques Deret
Senior Lenders: Crédit Lyonnais (Bernard Bullet, Rym Kahldi) as Senior Agent, Société Générale (Renan Fleitour), Banque Populaire (Olivier Grisard)

Milestone’s legal advisers:

Travers Smith (Will Howard)

Jeantet (Philippe Matignon, Pascal Georges)

Milestone’s due diligence team:

Constantin (Financial DD): Jean-Paul Séguret, Denis Cyrille
AMR (Commercial DD): Florent Jarry
Cobalt (Human Capital DD): Sabine Gardener, Maelenn Natral

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