Clearwater International advises Sanaga Group on the acquisition of BTS Location and the refinancing of its LBO debt

Clearwater International has advised Sanaga Group, a landscape management specialist, on the acquisition of BTS Location, a public and private works specialist, alongside the refinancing of the group’s LBO debt.

Established at the end of 2018 when the private equity fund, Initiative & Finance, acquired a minority stake in EDEA alongside Yannick Piacentini, Sanaga Group was formed through external growth across two businesses, namely landscape management in complex environments and landscaping.

The acquisition of BTS Location is the fourth element of external growth within the Sanaga Group. This transaction enables it to become one of the leading players in France, with capacity to operate in the territories of the Pyrenees, Alps, South-East quarter, Greater West, and Ile-de-France. Also, because of this acquisition, the group will generate around €25m in revenue, compared to €10m in 2018.

As part of this transaction, Sanaga group renegotiated its entire LBO debt and set up a CaPex line, in order to pursue its buy and build strategy. For future transactions, the group will prioritise targets in the landscaping sector, focusing on the creation of gardens and nurseries, in the south east of France.

Sanaga Group’s landscape management in complex environments business

EDEA carries out a variety of projects such as earthworks in difficult areas, river development, retaining walls, the creation of trails complying with the French forest fire protection regulations (DFCI), helicopter work, and roadworks. The success of its business model is based on expertise in various areas including forestry engineering, soil bioengineering, landscape architecture, and civil engineering, enabling it to offer turnkey solutions to customers.

Historically present in the electricity market, the group has penetrated the telecom market with significant needs for outdoor development, acquiring Locacom in 2018, a specialist in roads and utility services. This division now works for the main electricity accounts including RTE, Spie, Vinci, Bouygues, Eiffage, Ineo, and Inabensa, in telecom for Omexom, Ciret, Equos, and Engie, alongside local authorities and public institutions including French Ministry of Armed Forces, Marseille-Aix Metropolis, and SEMM.

Sanaga Group’s landscaping business

The group’s landscaping activities that result from the acquisition of Déco-jardins and Ka Renov, focus on the design, creation, development, and maintenance of gardens, via the group’s engineering office. Its main clients are private individuals, regional property developers, and to a lesser extent, public bodies, notably the Ministry of the Interior, in the Var, Pays d'Aix, and Alpes-Maritimes catchment areas.

Since joining the group in 2020, the turnover of the two businesses has increased by over 32%.

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    raised bank debt to refinance its existing debt and finance the acquisition of
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    Clearwater Advisers

    Adviser of the shareholders of Sanaga Group on the acquisition of BTS Location and the refinancing of its LBO debt

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