Clearwater International advises Walcor on its sale to JP Morgan Asset Management and Invitalia
Clearwater International has advised Walcor, the leading chocolate manufacturer in Italy, on its sale to JP Morgan Asset Management (JP Morgan AM) and Invitalia, Italy’s national agency for the attraction of investments and business development, owned by the country’s Ministry of Economy.
Founded in 1954 and based in Pozzaglio ed Uniti, a small town near Cremona, Italy, Walcor is a chocolate producer that has earned the prestigious recognition of being included in the Register of Historic Brands. It currently employs around 150 workers, a number that increases significantly during the Easter period when the production of its world's famous Easter eggs and chocolate coins rises.
After the sudden death of the founder in 2020 and in the midst of a global pandemic, the company filed a conditional agreement with lenders to protect its continuity and safeguard the future of more than 150 employees.
At the same time, Clearwater started a selection process for potential investors which led to the acquisition of an initial proposal from JP Morgan AM who was willing to underwrite the capital increase to further support the business.
Invitalia immediately took action to ensure support for the company. Following the verification of the requirements and feasibility of the relaunch plan, financial support of €10m was provided in addition to a non-repayable contribution of €2m over the next three years to protect employment.
The intervention of JP Morgan AM and Invitalia confirms the great value and potential of a company that, led by Attilio Capuano and his team, with Luigi Leonetti and Fabrizio Ceriotti, will be able to secure the future it deserves, as an ambassador of “Made in Italy”.