HEERENVEEN, the Netherlands – Accell Group NV announces that on the basis of a heads of agreement it is engaged in exclusive discussions with Raleigh Cycle Limited and its shareholders (main shareholder is Alan Finden-Crofts (photo)), which, if successfully concluded, could lead to the acquisition of Raleigh by Accell Group.
At Raleigh’s 125th anniversary party held in the evening hours of the second Taipei Cycle Show day last March; the possible sale of the renowned bike brand was a much talked about topic. It was said that there were four take-over candidates; Accell Group, Pon Holdings, Dorel Industries and an unnamed 4th party. Accell Group was said to be in the final stages of due diligence and with that the closest to completing a deal with Raleigh CEO and biggest shareholder Alan Finden-Crofts.
At Raleigh’s 125th anniversary party the company said goodbye to two of its senior managers, Victor Sun of the Derby Trading Company in Taiwan and Farid Vaiya of Raleigh Canada, who are retiring. The fact that Raleigh’s other top managers are close to or past retiring age is one of the major reasons why the complete company is on sale.
Raleigh operates through production and distribution companies in the UK, US and Canada along with worldwide licensing activities and a sourcing arm in Taiwan. Raleigh’s best known brands are Raleigh, Avenir and Diamondback. Raleigh has approximately 430 employees, realised sales of over USD 260 million (195 mn euro) and sold approximately 850,000 bicycles in 2011.
Acquiring Raleigh would mean that Accell Group will grow by about one third of its current size. The holding company recorded a turnover of 628.5 million euro last year and will grow to about 825 million including Raleigh. Production wise Accell will get close to 2 million bikes. With Raleigh the Dutch holding is significantly expanding its activities in the US and Canada. In Europe it will bring about discussion on the Raleigh license which is hold by Derby Cycle for Germany, Austria and Switzerland.