Hydraulics specialist HANSA-FLEX AG acquires Knapheide Hydraulik-Systeme in Beckum (North Rhine-Westphalia) as a strategic investment.
With around 400 employees, Knapheide produces and supplies hydraulic systems for earthmoving and agricultural machinery manufacturers and is also active in metalworking. The globally active HANSA-FLEX is Europe’s leading supplier in the field of hydraulics and pneumatics. With the acquisition of Knapheide, HANSA-FLEX will benefit from Knapheide’s experience in the OEM business, while Knapheide will in future be able to draw on the capacities of a globally positioned group. These synergies represent an enormous further development for the companies involved, their employees and external stakeholders. All jobs in the acquired business units will be retained.
“We have known and appreciated the Knapheide company for many years as a successful market companion and are taking the well-considered step of the acquisition primarily with a view to the opportunities for expansion and the associated future security for both companies and their employees.”Thomas Armerding, CEO and major shareholder of HANSA-FLEX
„Wir erweitern mit dieser strategischen Akquisition die Kapazitäten im Serienfertigungsbereich für das deutsche Erstausrüstungsgeschäft.“Christian-Hans Bültemeier,Chief Operating Officer board of directorsof HANSA-FLEX
Due to disruptions in the global supply chains and price increases for materials and energy, Knapheide was forced at the end of November 2022 to apply to the competent district court in Bielefeld for the initiation of self-administration proceedings. The self-administration reorganization proceedings were opened for Knapheide GmbH Hydraulik-Systeme and three other companies in the group on February 1, 2023, and attorney Stephan Michels was appointed as administrator.
An experienced team from WAYES, together with the reorganization and restructuring experts Prof. Dr. Gerrit Hölzle and Dr. Thorsten Bieg from the law firm GÖRG as reorganization managing directors and the operative management around Kai-Uwe Knapheide, Jürgen Kurz and Axel Fuisting, stabilized the company in a very short time and has successfully continued to run it until today. In the process, the self-administration was able to rely on the support of the employees and the customers at all times.
Immediately after the application was submitted, the WAYES transaction team initiated a structured M&A process and conducted an extensive international market approach. After approximately three months, this process has now been brought to a very successful conclusion within the promised timeframe. The contract is still subject to antitrust approval.
Promising negotiations continue for the conveyor belt business not taken over by HANSA-FLEX.
“The very closely timed sales process in the context of the insolvency proceeded in a very structured manner. WAYES managed to provide all parties involved with the necessary security in uncertain situations. This was particularly important in the case of a purchase out of insolvency, as significantly more parties have to be involved in the process and the data situation is usually relatively poor. Despite all the challenges, I am very satisfied with the result and the way we got there.”Florian Wiedemeyer, Commercial Executive Board of directors and CFO of HANSA-FLEX AG
“We are very pleased that we have found such an excellent solution – both for Knapheide’s creditors and for the companies and, of course, above all for the workforce – with the takeover.”Prof. Dr. Gerrit Hölzle und Dr. Thorsten Bieg, Redevelopment Managing Director
“Together with the self-administration team and the workforce, I am delighted to have found a new shareholder in HANSA-FLEX that will continue and further develop the company in a forward-looking manner.”Stephan Michels, Administrator
Knapheide, based in Beckum (North Rhine-Westphalia), has been a renowned manufacturer of high-quality hydraulic systems for decades and is a supplier to well-known customers in the fields of mechanical engineering and industry (including manufacturers of earthmoving machinery, agricultural machinery and forklift trucks). Approximately 400 people are employed in the four companies of the group. At last an annual turnover of approx. 72 million Euro could be achieved.
Founded in Bremen in 1962, HANSA-FLEX AG is Europe’s leading systems supplier for all aspects of fluid technology. The principle of success is system partnership. Having started out as a spare parts supplier for hydraulic hose lines, HANSA-FLEX has evolved over 60 years into one of the leading system suppliers in the field of hydraulics and pneumatics. With over 459 branches and 401 service vehicles in 41 countries, HANSA-FLEX is a global player serving over 150,000 customers worldwide. Its products and services range from simple hose assemblies to engineering, power unit construction, cylinder repair and prototype planning advice. More than 4,500 employees worldwide generated consolidated sales of around 575 million euros in 2022.