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Nordic Capital Fund VII has entered an agreement to acquire Norway’s leading discount retailer Europris Holding AS

Mar 02, 2012

Nordic Capital Fund VII ("Nordic Capital") today announced the acquisition of the Norwegian discount retailer Europris Holding AS ("Europris") from a consortium of investors led by the private equity firm IK Investment Partners. The parties have agreed not to disclose the terms of the agreement.

Europris, headquartered in Fredrikstad, Norway, is the leading mixed discount retailer with 196 stores across Norway, as well as 6 stores in Iceland. Since 2004, and through the previous economic downturn, Europris has experienced significant growth and executed a substantial retail chain expansion plan, rolling out a total of 66 stores.

"Nordic Capital has followed the development of Europris for some time and has been impressed by the performance of the company and its performance through tough retail market conditions. With the support of Nordic Capital, Europris can further strengthen its position as the leading discount retailer in Norway", commented Tom Vidar Rygh, Partner of NC Advisory AS, advisor to the Nordic Capital Funds.

The mixed discount retail sector is one of the strongest growing retail sectors in Norway, growing at a rate of 14% since 2005. The sector is still in its infancy in the country and represents only 8% of the total retail market, lower than that of its Nordic neighbours, and well below that of other European countries, such as Germany (21%). Given Europris' leading position, and proven resilience to adverse market conditions through the previous economic downturn, Europris is very well placed to benefit from the continued growth of the sector.

Following the acquisition by Nordic Capital, Europris will continue to strengthen its market position in Norway through improved customer offerings, further roll-out of stores, and investments in the existing store portfolio.

"We are very excited to be given an opportunity to realise our continuous growth plans for Europris under the support and ownership of Nordic Capital. Europris is working diligently on streamlining our operations and continuing our expansion. This has resulted in a solid sales growth, with sales for the chain topping NOK 3.6 bn in 2011", said Bjørn Maarud,
Chief Executive Officer of Europris.

"The whole Europris organisation is ready to take the next step in the company's development. I have great confidence that the sound judgement and abilities of the management team and our employees, in combination with the close cooperation and support from Nordic Capital, will demonstrate the continued strong growth prospects available to Europris in the years to come, as well as deliver improved profitability and even higher customer satisfaction", he concluded.

The agreement is subject to clearance from the Competition Authorities.

For more information, please contact:

Mikael Widell,
Communications Manager, NC Advisory AB
Tel: +46 703 11 99 60
Mikael.widell@nordiccapital.com


Bjørn Maarud,
CEO, Europris Holding AS
Tel: +47 69 39 66 00
bjorn.maarud@europris.no

About Europris
Europris is a mixed discount retailer with stores across Norway, from
Hammerfest in the North to Kristiansand in the South. The Company also operates stores in Iceland. To accommodate efficient retail store
operations, the Company has a wholesale and warehouse organisation located in Fredrikstad, Norway, which sources and distributes the vast majority of the Company's products. Europris opened its first store in 1992, and currently has nearly 200 stores, throughout the country, with total sales of NOK 3.6 bn in 2011. Europris strives to provide all its customers with a wide selection of high quality products at the lowest possible price. For more information please see www.europris.no

About Nordic Capital
Since the start in 1989, Nordic Capital Private Equity Funds have invested in large and medium sized companies, primarily in the Nordic region. Nordic Capital creates value in its investments, through  committed ownership and by targeting strategic development and operational
improvements. The funds invest in companies in Northern Europe and in selected  investment opportunities internationally. The most recent fund is Nordic Capital Fund VII with EUR 4.3bn in committed capital, principally provided by international institutional investors, such as pension funds, asset managers and insurance companies. Nordic Capital Funds are based in Jersey, Channel Islands, and are advised by the NC Advisory companies in Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Germany and the UK. Additional information about Nordic Capital is available on www.nordiccapital.com

About Nordic Capital Private Equity Funds

Since the start in 1989, Nordic Capital Private Equity Funds have invested in large and medium sized companies, primarily in Northern Europe. Through committed ownership and by targeting strategic development and operational improvements, Nordic Capital creates value in its investments. The funds invest in companies in Northern Europe and in selected investment opportunities internationally. They are based in Jersey, Channel Islands, and are advised by the NC Advisory companies in Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Germany and the UK. Additional information about Nordic Capital is available through its corporate website, www.nordiccapital.com

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