FIMI Opportunity Funds is acquiring 70% of Stern Engineering. FIMI, led by Ishay Davidi, will pay $34 million for the stake, reflecting a $49 million value for the company. Completion of the deal is contingent on various regulatory approvals.
Stern Engineering was founded in 1989 by Yossi and Yuval Stern. The two founders will remain with the company after the acquisition, retaining 30% of its shares, and will continue to manage it. Stern Engineering develops, manufactures, and markets electronic sanitation products that save water.
Stern Engineering's products include faucets, soap dishes, and contact-less electronic hand dryers. The company's products are included in most of the most prestigious public buildings and office buildings in Israel.
Stern Engineering sells its product in over 80 countries, has over 300 employees, and maintains production facilities in Kiryat Gat and Germany.
In 2013, Stern Engineering acquired Baran Advanced Technologies, which develops and manufactures keyboards and command and control buttons using piezoelectric and markets products mainly in the US. Baran's technology facilitates production of weather-resistant keyboards that need no external power source.
FIMI, founded in 1996, is Israel's first and largest private equity fund, with $5 billion in managed assets. The fund acquires control of companies and upgrades their value significantly. FIMI has acquired control of 88 companies and sold 58 of them to date in deals totaling over $5.5 billion.
Last week, FIMI completed the sale of its remaining 10.5% holding in Inrom Construction Industries Ltd. (TASE:INRM) for NIS 130 million. The investment was extremely successful for FIMI, which sold shares in Inrom for a total of NIS 1.3 billion in recent years, 10 times the amount of FIMI's investment in the company.
FIMI held its shares in Inrom through Inrom Industries, a private company, which still has holdings three other construction industry companies after the sale: Urdan Metal and Casting Industries, Alony Design (home design and bathrooms), and Orlite Industries (industrial products). These holdings are valued at NIS 200-300 million.
In addition to Inrom, FIMI also sold its holdings in several other portfolio companies in recent years through offers for sale on the TASE, including drug distribution company Novolog (Pharm-Up 1966) Ltd. (TASE: NVLG). Just before the end of 2018, at the height of the stock market plunge, FIMI managed to complete an IPO for security group G1, and also sold shares in an offer for sale. FIMI got a total of NIS 150 million for the G1 shares it sold.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on January 22, 2019
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