Ambienta, the largest European sustainability focused fund, enters the aluminium industry with the acquisition of Phoenix International
Ambienta SGR SpA, Europe’s largest sustainability focused private equity investor, announces the acquisition of Phoenix International SpA (“Phoenix”), the European leader in the design, manufacturing and sale of aluminium extrusion dies for the construction, transportation and industrial markets.
Ambienta recognizes the significant potential for growth of the aluminium market, with aluminium demand more than doubling in the last 15 years, driven by long-term sustainable macro trends. The metal’s high recyclability (77% of all aluminium ever produced is still in use today), lightweight properties and durability make it the preferred material in an increasing number of applications. In the transport sector, aluminium alloys are used to reduce vehicle weight to improve fuel efficiency and meet the increasingly stringent CO2 regulatory emission targets. One kilogram of aluminium alloys typically substitutes 1.8-2kg of steel, allowing for an average of 1.5%-2.5% reduction in fuel consumption and a corresponding decrease in CO2 emissions. In the construction industry, aluminium is increasingly preferred vs. plastic in the facades of high-rise buildings, given the metal’s durability and fire-resistant properties. These properties also drive aluminium adoption in various industrial applications, such as general engineering, power distribution, and other.
Within aluminium, extruded aluminium outpaces other forms of aluminium in terms of growth, thanks to its flexibility and convenience. Extrusion dies are a critical component in aluminium extrusion, while accounting for a tiny portion of extruders’ cost. Phoenix’s reference market for aluminium extrusion dies is estimated at over EUR 1 bn and forecasted to grow by 4-5% over the next five years.
Founded in 1972 and headquarted in Verdello, Italy, Phoenix is the market leader in Europe for the design and manufacturing of aluminium extrusion dies, with a complete portfolio of products and a focus on complex and technologically advanced dies. The company has a global footprint of eight plants in Europe, the US and the Middle East, and a centralized in-house design centre. Phoenix employs over 700 people serving 250 customers worldwide, with a custom-made, specialized sales model to extruders which supports clients both throughout the extrusion profile manufacturing process and during the aftersales period. The company generated revenues of EUR 91m in 2018.