Goldman Sachs and Altor Fund IV acquire Navico

Navico – a provider of marine electronics and parent company to the Lowrance, Simrad, B&G and GoFree brands – announced Wednesday that Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division and Altor Fund IV have partnered and signed an agreement to acquire Navico from the Altor 2003 Fund.

Navico has a history of investment in research and development. It has led to the development of award-winning technologies that make boating safer, easier and more fun. In the last two years, Navico developed the award-winning HALOTM Pulse Compression Radar technology, StructureScan 3D sonar technology for fish finding and B&G sailing chartplotters used to race around the world.

The company was created from the acquisitions of Simrad Yachting, Lowrance Electronics and Brunswick New Technologies. Navico has worked systematically to integrate the companies, consolidating seven product brands into three, six factories into one and building one common technology platform. Today, Navico has approximately 1,500 employees and its products are sold in over 100 countries.

Navico recently launched the GoFree brand to drive development of cloud-based digital solutions and apps across its product range. As part of its growth it acquired Contour Innovations, a cloud-based digital mapping provider. Navico has also increased its focus on the commercial marine market and, as part of this, acquired both Maritime Information Systems’ and Consilium’s radar business.

Over the last ten years Navico has been driving change in the recreational and commercial industry, launching one new product every 20 days, and has steadily outperformed its competitors and grown its market share since 2009.

“We are pleased that we will have the continued engagement and expertise of Altor who have supported our strong growth over the last ten years. The company has grown from a merger of three smaller companies into a technological leader in the marine electronics industry,” said Leif Ottosson, president and CEO of Navico. “We are excited about the growth-opportunities that our new strong and dynamic ownership will enable us to pursue in recreational and commercial marine within both hardware and digital solutions.”

“It has been a privilege to work with the management team in Navico over the last ten years, building a great company, which is very well positioned for further growth,” said Hugo Maurstad, chairman of the board of Navico and partner at Altor Equity Partners. “The high performing recreational business is an asset that also can be leveraged to grow in the commercial segment over the next ten years.”

“Navico is a great company and its track record and speed of innovation is impressive,” said Michael Bruun, managing director in the Merchant Banking Division of Goldman Sachs. “We look forward to working with the company over the coming years, supporting its organic and acquisition-based growth. The new owners contribute a financial capacity that allows the company to raise its growth ambitions going forward.”

The transaction will be subject to customary regulatory requirements and approvals.

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