AURELIUS signs agreement to sell remaining Office Depot Europe business to strategic buyer RAJA Group
Munich (Germany) / Paris (France), August 16, 2021 – AURELIUS Equity Opportunities (ISIN: DE000A0JK2A8) today announces that one of its subsidiaries has signed an agreement to sell Office Depot Europe, which includes the remaining Viking and Office Depot Europe activities to strategic buyer RAJA Group, (Roissy, France). RAJA Group is Europe’s leading distributor of packaging, supplies and equipment for businesses, and a major player in the office supplies and furniture market. Having sold its activities in Southern, Eastern and Northern Europe over the last three years, the sale of the remaining activities in North-Western Europe completes the disposal of Office Depot Europe. The transaction is subject to approval by the relevant competition authorities and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2021. Financial details were not disclosed.
With its commercial brands Viking and Office Depot, the business now disposed operates in several European markets including DACH, Benelux, the UK and Ireland and serves customers from small start-ups to large scale businesses. It has long standing experience and expertise in the office supplies sector and offers an integrated, omni-channel platform and dedicated professionals across its main segments and brands.
Office Depot Europe was acquired by AURELIUS in 2017 as a carve-out from US-based Office Depot, Inc. Since then, AURELIUS made extensive investments in the company’s e-commerce activities which resulted in a strategic realignment of Office Depot Europe focussing on Viking as a strong e-commerce player generating almost 90% of revenues online. Over the past three years, significant parts of the business have been sold to strategic buyers securing their sustainable future and development under new ownership. Todays disposal to RAJA Group completes this disposal process.
“It is great to complete the exit of Office Depot Europe after successful realignment and transformation. This transaction offers RAJA Group as a long-term strategic buyer great potential and a base to further accelerate and develop their business,” says Fritz Seemann, Executive Director of AURELIUS Equity Opportunities.
"This acquisition represents a tremendous strategic opportunity to strengthen our position in Europe, in particular in those countries where we are already present with RAJA subsidiaries. It will further expand the Group's presence and give new impetus to our ambition in the office supplies market. This acquisition is perfectly aligned with our strategic vision of becoming a global partner of European companies from start-ups to major multinationals, and will reinforce our partnership with globally known brands,” says Danièle Kapel-Marcovici, RAJA Group CEO.
Raffael Reinhold, CEO of Office Depot Europe: "We are delighted about this opportunity with RAJA and we are looking forward to be a part of the RAJA Group. The strategic realignment to our business made us attractive for this strategic buyer and provides a great position to further drive our business together. We would like to thank AURELIUS for the good and successful cooperation and support during this fundamental transformation over the past years.”
AURELIUS has been advised by PwC (M&A), Deloitte (Financial Due Diligence) and Jones Day (Legal).