US insurance giant Prudential subscribed a 50 million euros bond issued by Crif spa, a global company specialising in the development and management of credit bureau services, business information systems and credit solutions. Established in 1988 in Bologna (Italy), Crif has an international presence, operating over four continents (Europe, America, Africa and Asia).
The bonds. maturing in July 2028 and paying a fixed coupon, were placed through a private placement procedure and were subscirbed by Prudential’s subsidiary Pricoa Capital Group. The latter also subscribed an agreement to committ further subscribtions of Crif’s bonds tilla maximum consideration of 125 million dollars (or euros equivalent). Mediobanca acted as sole arranger of the deal, while Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer was Crif’s legal advisor and Morgan, Lewis & Bockius was Pricoa’s.
Thanks to this deal, Crif will be able to diversify its financial sources while proceeds will be used to support further investments aiming at growing the business in the world, a note says.
Last December Crif had bought Bürgel Group in Germany, a joint venture between Euler Hermes, a worldwide leader in trade credit insurance, and EOS, an international provider of financial services. Prior crif had expanded its operations in Turkey with the acquisition of a majority share in Recom, a leading player in the debt collection sector; and in Switzerland, with the acquisition of OFWI – Teledata from Axon Active Holding.
Crif is also Nomisma’s major shareholder. Nomisma is an Italian independent company carrying out economic research and consultancy for businesses, associations and public administrations on a national and international level.
Led by chairman and ceo Carlo Gherardi, Crif employs about 2,100 people worldwide and reached 390 million euros in consolidated revenues in 2015 (from 330 millions in 2014), with 106 millions in ebitda (from 96.9 millions9 and a net financial debt of 135.4 million (from 142.5 millions).
As for Pricoa Capital, the company is not new at investing in Italy’s pmi’s debt through private placements. Pricoa actually had prior invested in bonds issued by Epta (20 million euros), an inernational leader in the freezing sector for GDO; by Carco (30 millions), a company producing and distributing sealing systems for all critical industrial applications; and by Ama (30 millions), a group producing components for agricultural machinery.