NPM Capital invests in medium-sized companies in the Benelux region, providing the support they need to move to the next phase of growth. Benefitting from all the capabilities required to facilitate flexible, generally long-term, investment horizons, the portfolio currently comprises both majority and minority stakes in 24 companies and includes growth capital.
NPM Capital focuses on four investment themes, each underpinned by a strong set of investment criteria: Everything is Digital, Feeding the World, Future of Energy, and Healthy Life. In addition to in-house studies and expert support, advisory boards also help the company to increase its knowledge and its network around these themes.
2021 saw most segments of the economy rebound from COVID-19, helped by the stimulus money supply of central banks as well as an easing of restrictions during the summer. The resulting economic growth boosted a transaction market that reached new heights building on the momentum achieved in the fourth quarter of 2020. Low and stable interest rates, an ever increasing influx of money into Private Equity in search of returns, and lenders eager to provide credit for acquisitions all sustained high valuations. These same circumstances, however, also intensified the challenge in identifying new investments with the potential to generate attractive returns.
Strong economic growth had a positive impact on the activities of NPM Capital participations, increasing both revenues and financial performance. Attracting skilled people and managing the supply chain posed major challenges for many companies during the year. On several occasions, NPM Capital supplied businesses with the growth capital required to expand - both organically and via add-on acquisitions.
2021 was a very successful year for NPM with many divestments taking place. The sale of Mentaal Beter, a chain of mental health support practices, was followed by that of Deli Home, a supplier of wood, closets, and various other supplies to the DIY industry. Next came exits from HAK, a supplier of vegetables in glass and pouches, and Nile Dutch Holding, a shipping line with a West African focus.
In August NPM sold the majority of its stake in Bergman Holding, a leading privately-held chain of medical clinics in the Netherlands. Finally, NPM sold its majority stake in Kiwa to SHV, a transaction that provides Kiwa with an ideal foundation for accelerating growth. At the close of the year, NPM came to an agreement to sell its stake in Hendrix Genetics. The completion is expected to take place in the first half of 2022.
Despite the crowded market, NPM was able to make a number of promising investments as well.
In September, the delisting of ICT Group led to NPM Capital acquiring this renowned industrial automation company active in Western Europe – and in the Netherlands in particular.
NPM also announced the completion of its acquisition of Infinitas Learning, owner of established educational content and service providers such as Noordhoff (Netherlands), Plantijn (Belgium), and Liber (Sweden). These leading companies have all developed strong positions in the provision of content that has helped generations of students to master their studies. A minority stake in Infinitas was subsequently sold to Rabo Participations and PGGM, a large Dutch pension provider.
NPM was also able to take a minority stake in Kubo, an international turn-key supplier of glasshouses, aimed at continuing that company’s strong growth trajectory.
In contrast to 2020, NPM capital was able to present a positive net income in 2021 mainly driven by capital gains on above mentioned exits resulting in a significant contribution to SHV’s net income.
Strong transaction market