China-based Haier and Spanish business Fagor will establish a joint venture (with shares of 51% and 49% respectively) to serve as the European refrigerator production platform for both companies. The new site forecasts an annual production capacity of 500,000 units which is expected to increase to 1 million units within 5 years.
Clearwater’s partner firm, InterChina, served as Fagor’s advisor during the transaction.
This groundbreaking transaction is the first of its kind in the sector: two global leaders in the white goods sector have joined forces in addressing the European market. This transaction not only involves an industrial and technological angle, but also allows for developing market access to the EU and fostering unique R&D that combines Chinese and EU innovations.
The strategically located Poland-based factory will strengthen Haier’s position in Europe by bringing its R&D, production and marketing closer to its sales territory, whilst also bolstering Fagor’s competitive position in Europe and Asia. The construction of the refrigerator factory is due to begin in September 2013 and production is expected by June 2014.
The Chinese government’s Go Global strategy has encouraged enterprises to invest overseas for a number of years, using foreign exchange reserves to accelerate overseas expansion and acquisitions by Chinese companies. Access to new markets, talent and IP protection makes the policy even more attractive to successful Chinese brands. As Chinese investors saw a gap between expected annual investment returns and actual returns in 2012, it is expected that more investors will consider seeking opportunities abroad in the future.
The Haier Group is the world’s No. 1 Major Appliances brand with an 8.6% retail volume share and global revenue of 25.8 billion USD in 2012. With global HQ in Qingdao, China and regional HQ in Paris and New York, to serve its clients in Europe and America, Haier has 61 trading companies, 24 manufacturing plants and 21 industrial parks with 80,000 employees. Haier specializes in technology-driven research, manufacturing and trading a range of products. In Europe, these include: TVs, refrigerators, dishwashers, washing machines, consumer electronics and energy-saving home solutions.
The Fagor Group is the fifth largest European household manufacturer with 16.3% market share in Spain, 14.2% in France and 7.2% in Poland, and 2012 revenue of 1.53 billion USD. The company operates with 10 brands in 130 countries worldwide. The four pillars of its strategic plan are growth, alliances, adaptation and team. Fagor belongs to the Mondragon Corporation, the tenth largest Spanish business group and the largest cooperative organisation worldwide.
InterChina is Clearwater’s partner firm in China. The firm is a leading M&A and Strategy Advisory firm specializing in China. Founded in 1994, the firm has more than 60 advisors based in China (Shanghai, Beijing), North America and Europe (Washington DC and Madrid). InterChina has established a successful track record of more than 170 M&A and Investment transactions, mainly in Auto, Healthcare, Machinery, Food & Beverage, and Chemical sectors.