Thule Group

Sapa acquires integrated roof rail business from Thule

Press Release   •   Sep 21, 2010 15:30 BST

The Thule Group, has agreed to divest its automotive related integrated roof rail business to Sapa. The agreement that was reached today means that Sapa will be taking over Thule’s roof rail business including two productions plants, sales, design and engineering resources in Poland and the UK by early October 2010.

In line with the strategic direction to focus more on branded consumer related products and retail the Thule Group management earlier this year took the decision to divest its integrated roof rail business with operational units in Poland and the UK with a turnover of 30 Million Euro. The business unit serves a broad portfolio of large automotive manufacturers with line-fitted roof rails and side-steps for passenger cars.

The automotive sector is one of the strategic market segments where Sapa already has a strong position and clear growth aspirations. This acquisition allows Sapa to expand the customer base, add valuable product design competence, and create a stronger market position. In addition, Sapa will be able to increase customer value through the combined knowledge, experience and technical competence of the two companies.

“Sapa is the global leader in the aluminium extrusion business, and our strategy is to establish a close cooperation with our customers to be able to offer them value-adding aluminum solutions. There is a growing interest for aluminum solutions within the Automotive business, and roof rails is one area where we see exciting opportunities to expand our offering. With the integration of Thule’s roof rail business we will have a leading position on this market in Europe and will also be able to serve customers globally”, says President Sapa Profiles Europe Arne Rengstedt.

President and CEO of Thule Group, Magnus Welander says in a comment: “With the Thule Group’s increased focus on branded products designed to make active life easier to enjoy for the consumer, the integrated roof rail business was no longer a core business for us. We were looking for a buyer that would ensure that our longstanding leadership within design and service to our customers could be integrated into a strong manufacturing organization so that employees and customer alike would be assured of a strong development potential going forward. I am happy we have been able to come to an agreement with Sapa, as I am convinced they have the strategic focus and competence to take this business further.”

For further information please contact:
Magnus Welander
CEO Thule Group
Phone: +46-703-325 504
e-mail : magnus.welander@thule.com

Fredrik Erlandsson
SVP Communications, Thule Group
Phone: +46-70-309 00 21
e-mail: Fredrik.erlandsson@thule.com

Arne Rengstedt
BA President Sapa Profiles Europe
Phone: +46 706-832 910
e-mail: arne.rengstedt@sapagroup.com 

V
ictor Schneider
Vice President Sapa Automotive
Phone: +49 173 324 82 26
e-mail: victor.schneider@sapagroup.com

---
About Thule Group
Thule Group is a world leader in products and brands that make it easy for people to transport their equipment securely, safely and in style. Under the motto Active Life, Simplified, Thule Group offers products within four business areas: Carry Solutions (laptop and camera bags, backpacks etc), Vehicle Solutions (roof racks, bike racks, ski boxes, snow chains etc), Work Solutions (ladder racks, tool boxes etc) and Towing Solutions (towbars and trailers). The Thule Group has about 3,500 employees at more than 50 production facilities and sales offices worldwide. In 2009 sales amounted to SEK 5.8 billion.
Find out more at www.thule.com

About Sapa Group
Sapa is the largest aluminium profiles producer in the world. The Sapa Group develops, manufactures and markets value-added profiles, profile-based building systems and heat exchanger solutions in the light-weight material aluminium. Sapa is divided in the business areas Sapa Profiles, Sapa Building System and Sapa Heat Transfer and is represented in Europe, North America and Asia. The business concept is built on close cooperation with customers. Sapa is the leading company in its field of operation and have customers in the building, transport, engineering, telecom and home and office industry. In 2009 the Sapa Group had combined net sales of 25,100 MSEK and 13,100 employees. Sapa is part of Norwegian Orkla ASA.
Further information can be found on the web site: www.sapagroup.com